Images have surfaced on social media showing officers from the Panama police forces pointing guns at targets depicting people wearing Arab headdresses during an Israeli-run training course, The New Arab website reported.
The images, which were shortly deleted, were posted on the Twitter pages of the Panama National Police and the local Israeli chamber of commerce, according to The New Arab.
After deleting the post, the police force issued a statement of apology:
“We regret that during an event in which, as an institution, we participated as guests, a situation outside the nature of our mission and duty as the first security institution arose, for which we wish to present our apologies to those who have felt affected.”
#Comunicado | Lamentamos que durante un acto en el que como institución participamos como invitados haya surgido una situación ajena a la naturaleza de nuestra misión y deber como primera Institución de seguridad. pic.twitter.com/h2MebZOLR7
— Policía Nacional (@ProtegeryServir) October 2, 2021
The post was met with backlash from Twitter users as well as from the Panamanian Committee of Solidarity with Palestine who made a request to the government in Panama to discontinue the intervention of foreign countries in training security forces.
The Panamanian Committee of Solidarity with Palestine also said the training course promoted “violence and racism so that anyone who wears a hijab or something similar can be classified as a terrorist”.
(The New Arab, PC, Social Media)