These testimonies call attention of international human rights groups.
Read heart wrenching testimonies of Palestinian children in Israeli jails. The Asra Information Office reveals very painful and extremely distressing testimonies of Palestinian children. They were subjected to torture, beatings and cruel treatment during their detention at the hands of the Israeli occupation troops.
A statement was released by Asra’s Information Office in Gaza. It confirms that the Israeli occupation forces continue to disregard the principles and values of human rights. Although, these have been endorsed by international agreements to protect the rights of minors.
Torture, cruel and degrading treatment against minor prisoners are unacceptable and these acts are considered war crimes. There are international conventions on the rights of minor prisoners. Yet, Israeli forces keep flaunting them.
Palestinian Children in Israeli Jails
The young prisoner Muhammad Zallum (17), who is in “Damoun” prison, told his lawyer that he was arrested after a raid on his house in the town of Silwan in occupied Jerusalem. The boy was severely beaten and then transferred to the “Ashkelon” detention camp. He was thrown into the cells for 23 days, during which he was interrogated for long hours. During his stay in the prison, the jailers deliberately transferred him to a room without cameras, where they beat him brutally without mercy.
In his testimony, the teen “Mustafa Salama” (17) from Azzun in Qalqilya said that the occupation soldiers attacked him after storming his home, beating him with their rifle butts, hands and feet, and then threw him onto the floor of the military jeep, stomping on him with their military pads. They beat and insulted him with the dirtiest language he had ever heard.
As a result of the severe beating that Salama was subjected to, he lost consciousness, and upon recovery, found himself in the cells of “Jalameh”. There he was interrogated for long hours while he was tied to a small chair, after which he was transferred to the minors’ prisoners section in “Megiddo”.
Painful Stories of Palestinian Children
Majd (17) from Beit Hanina, a district of occupied Jerusalem, was subjected to a harsh investigation inside the “Al-Maskobiyya” cells. He was interrogated, naked for long hours while he was sitting on a small chair and he was also not spared from insults and slapping by the interrogators, knowing that the boy was naked. He is currently held in “Damon” detention centre.
Likewise, the boy Hani Rumailat (17), from the Jenin camp, was subjected to harsh interrogation at the “Jalameh” detention centre. During his interrogation, five prisoners assaulted him with batons, causing him many bruises and broken bones, and as a result of the injuirs was transferred to the “Afula” hospital. Afterwatds, he was returned to “Jalameh” detention centre, where he remained for 20 days, and finally to “Megiddo”.
The minor-age prisoner Munir Arqoub (17), from Kafr Ayn in Ramallah district, was harassed by the occupation forces during his arrest near the “Beit El” military checkpoint, where 3 soldiers attacked him, blanketed him on the ground and severely beat him.
Then they threw him into the jeep and transferred him to a nearby army camp, where soldiers kept him exposed in the cold for long hours and deprived him of sleep. The next day, he was transferred to Ofer Detention Center for interrogation, and then to the POWs section in Megiddo.
Testimonies from Palestinian Inmates
Testimonies by young Palestinian inmates tell only a small part of what prisoners of the Israeli occupation are exposed to during arrest and investigation. International conventions on human rights, specifically the Convention on the Rights of the Child, stress the need to protect children, and call for the prohibition of torture and related actions against all minors.
The occupation carries out grave violations against child prisoners from the moment of their detention, including storming their homes in the late hours of the night, arresting and transferring them to interrogation and arrest centers, and keeping them without food or drink for long hours, often for two days.
The children are regularly subjected to insulting personal language, threats and intimidations, extracting confessions from them under pressure and intimidation, pushing them to sign statements written in Hebrew without translating to Arabic, and depriving them of their legal right to have a parent and lawyer present during the investigation, and other methods and violations that were denounced by several international human rights organizations.
How many Palestinian Children are in Israeli Jails?
Nearly 500-700 Palestinian children, some as young as 12 years old, are detained and prosecuted each year in the Israeli military court system. Most of the child detainees are charged with throwing stones.
Since 2015, child imprisonment by Israeli forces has witnessed many transformations, including the occupation’s approval of racist laws and the submission of draft laws that legislate the long sentences against children. In some cases, prison terms for minors reach more than 10 years. Life sentences are not unknown.
170 Palestinian children are still held in the Israeli occupation prisons. They are detained them in three central prisons, i.e. Megiddo, Ofer, and Damon.
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