Sponge Grenade
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Sponge Grenade

A sponge grenade is a riot control weapon, intended to be non-lethal, which is fired from a 40 mm grenade launcher to cause confusion, or otherwise temporarily disable its target. As a single blunt force object, it is best used when aimed at a particular individual.

Sponge grenade projectile

The projectile weighs about 28 grams (1 ounce). It is bullet-shaped, with a foam rubber nose and a high-density, plastic projectile body.

Israeli Policemen carrying Sponge grenades against Bedouin demonstrators in Hura, November 2013

Potential for injury or death

If used improperly--such as at distances closer than 10 metres--injuries to the targeted individual could prove fatal.[] Used properly, the weapon is intended to cause no permanent damage, but may, in some cases, cause broken bones, head wounds or permanent damage to eyes.[1] Sponge grenades impacting the upper body or head have killed targeted individuals.[1][2]

Demonstrator hit by sponge grenade in Ni'lin, November 2015

Use around the world


Israel has deployed sponge grenades against Palestinian protesters on several occasions.[1]

Hong Kong

The Hong Kong Police Force has deployed sponge grenades as a riot control tool on several occasions in July 2019 during the anti-extradition protests.[3]

United States

Sponge grenades were used by some police departments during the George Floyd Protests in the summer of 2020 and were cited as being one of the most common types of less-lethal rounds employed,.[4] In some cases protesters were struck in the head or face by the rounds, causing serious injury.[5][6]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Haaretz Editorial (14 September 2014). "Police's Use of Sponge Rounds Must Be Strictly According to Protocol". Haaretz. {{cite news}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  2. ^ Khalel, Sheren (14 August 2017). "Sponge rounds, rubber bullets, and tear gas -- how Israel's non-lethal munitions can kill". Mondoweiss.
  3. ^ Kuo, Lily; Choi, Christy (5 August 2019). "Hong Kong protests descend into chaos during citywide strike". The Guardian. Hong Kong.
  4. ^ Fowers, Alyssa; Steckelberg, Aaron; Berkowitz, Bonnie (5 June 2020). "A guide to the less-lethal weapons that law enforcement uses against protesters". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2020.
  5. ^ Gliha, Lori Jane. "Police projectile fractures Denver protester's face; she says it was unprovoked". KVDR FOX31 Denver. Retrieved 2020.
  6. ^ Gliha, Lori Jane (5 June 2020). "Lawsuit asking for Denver PD to stop using PepperBalls and sponge grenades moves to federal court". KVDR FOX31 Denver.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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