Israel army detained a child for nearly a year without charge

Israeli police officers detain a Palestinian youth on 4 January 2012 [Mahfouz Abu Turk/Apaimages]

Israeli occupation forces held a Palestinian child for nearly a year without charge, reported Defence for Children International-Palestine (DCIP).

On 20 September 2017, Israeli soldiers raided Laith K.’s home in the middle of the night, in Kafr Ein village near Ramallah.

Aged only 17-years-old, Laith was “bound, blindfolded, and physically assaulted by Israeli forces. He was neither informed of the reason for his arrest nor presented with a warrant”, reported DCIP.

During interrogation, Laith was questioned about throwing stones, a so-called “security offense” under Israeli military law. Although he denied the allegations, “the interrogator printed out a statement in both Arabic and Hebrew and made him sign it”.

READ: Israel police arrest Palestine teen in Jerusalem

Six days after being first detained – during which time neither Laith nor his lawyer were informed of the reason for his detention – “an Israeli military judge approved a four-month administrative detention order against Laith”, an order subsequently renewed

The order was renewed in January 2018 for an additional four months, and renewed for a second time in May 2018, before Laith was released without explanation in August.

Overall, the youth “spent nearly 46 weeks in military detention and was never formally charged with a crime”, a “prolonged detention” which “forced him to miss his final year of high school”.

According to DCIP, “experiences like Laith’s have increased in frequency in recent years”.

“Between 2012-2014,” the NGO stated, “Israeli forces briefly suspended its practice of detaining children under administrative detention orders. However, between October 2015 and June 2019, DCIP documented 30 children in administrative detention”.

Administrative detention is a form of imprisonment without charge or trial. Those held under administration detention – including children – are not presented with charges, and the so-called “secret evidence” is neither disclosed to the detainee nor the lawyer.

READ: Israel arrests 12 Palestinians in West Bank

An administrative detention order can be renewed indefinitely.

“You can’t know when you will be released, what will happen to you, or anything else,” Laith said in an interview with DCIP after his release.

#Israel arrests up to 700 Palestinian children each year in which 97% of them had no parent or lawyer present during interrogation


(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Israel Police repeatedly refuse to hear testimony of Palestinian accused of rape

Image of Israeli border policemen in the West Bank on 22 March 2017 [Wisam Hashlamoun/Apaimages]

Israeli policemen in the West Bank on 22 March 2017

A Palestinian man accused of raping a 13-year-old Israeli girl was denied the chance to give his testimony to Israel Police on several occasions prior to his arrest.

The Palestinian – who has not been named but is thought to be a man in his thirties from the occupied West Bank – was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of raping a 13-year-old Israeli girl in the city of Ashdod, on Israel’s Mediterranean coast.

It is not clear when the alleged incident took place, though an initial complaint was filed to Israel Police at the end of May. According to the police, the Palestinian man established a relationship with the teenager while carrying out renovations work at her boarding school in Ashdod.

Some reports state that, on an unspecified day, the Palestinian in question took the girl to a nearby apartment – which he was also renovating – and raped her. However, other reports state that the man took the girl “to his room”, where he then committed the assault. The latter report does not make clear where the Palestinian’s room was located.

The police claim the Palestinian then fled to the West Bank, prompting a manhunt which led to his arrest on Tuesday. The Magistrate’s Court in nearby Ashkelon yesterday extended the Palestinian’s remand until 15 July, also allowing certain details of the case to be made public.

READ: In landmark decision, Israel court rules PA ‘liable’ for Second Intifada attacks

However, Israel Police yesterday announced that it was opening an additional investigation into claims made by the Palestinian in question, who says that he reported to several police stations to give his testimony and refute the allegations against him, but was repeatedly turned away.

According to a report by Ynet, the Palestinian “denied all accusations and said that he reported to a nearby police station the minute he learned of suspicions against him, in order to clear his name”.

“He further said that in the Hebron and Gush Etzion police stations [in the occupied West Bank] that he reported to, he was told that he isn’t wanted for any kind of questioning,” Ynet added.

Israeli daily Haaretz confirmed Ynet’s report, adding: “The suspect went to the police station on July 3, and asked if he was wanted for investigation, as his entry permit to Israel had been revoked and he had heard rumors that the police wanted to question him […] officers told him he does not need to be questioned, and he then left the site.”

The Palestinian man’s lawyer, Shani Farjun, added that he had “visited five other Israeli police stations in the West Bank and was told at all of them that he was not being sought for questioning”. He even “received documentation from the Israeli police confirming this,” she added.

Farjun argued that the Palestinian’s “conduct and desire to be questioned are the best testimony to his innocence, for he did not try to escape questioning and did all he could to clear his name.”

“I’ve never seen a suspect who tries to turn himself in so many times and no one takes any notice,” his lawyer noted, adding that “for weeks we’ve been trying to understand why he is needed for questioning and we keep being turned down, until yesterday they decide to arrest him.”

READ: Israel army covered up settlers’ killing of wounded Palestinian father

The case bears striking resemblance to a separate investigation which emerged last month in the occupied West Bank, in which 46-year-old Palestinian Mahmoud Katusa was wrongly accused of raping a seven-year-old Israeli girl.

Katusa – who hails from the village of Deir Qadis – was charged with kidnapping and raping the girl, who is believed to be from Modi’in Ilit, an ultra-Orthodox illegal settlement not far from Katusa’s village, near Israel’s illegal Separation Wall.

Katusa had reportedly worked at the girl’s school as a maintenance worker, with the indictment against him charging that he won her trust by engaging her in conversation and giving her sweets over a prolonged period of time. The indictment claimed that Katusa then dragged the girl to a nearby apartment where he was working and, with the help of Palestinian friends who held her down, raped the child.

However, holes quickly began to appear in the police investigation, with sources close to the probe telling Haaretz that the police had failed to send potentially-crucial evidence to the forensics department for examination and changed their account of the attack after Katusa’s alibi was confirmed, raising questions about the validity of the indictment.

In light of these discrepancies, Israel Police eventually dropped the charges against Katusa, saying in a statement that officials involved in the investigation were “all of the opinion that there isn’t enough evidence to file charges against Qatusa”.

Speaking following his release, Katusa’s lawyer, Nashef Darwish, said that the incident “says a lot about the way the [Israeli] judiciary handles anything that has to do with Palestinians on the other side of the Green Line”. The emergence of another almost-identical case will likely raise more questions about the Israeli police and judiciary’s handling of claims against Palestinians.

READ: Settler vandals call for death of Palestinian cleared of Israel girl’s rape

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Israeli Soldiers Kill A Palestinian In Gaza

11 JUL2:35 PM

Israeli soldiers killed, Thursday, a young Palestinian man, east of Beit Hanoun, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip. The Palestinian was a member of Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, and was shot while trying to prevent protesters from approaching the perimeter fence.

The Palestinian Health Ministry has confirmed that the soldiers shot and seriously injured Mahmoud Ahmad al-Adham, 28, on Thursday morning, east of Beit Hanoun, and added that the young man succumbed to his injuries on Thursday evening.

He was one of many “Field Control” officers, stationed near the perimeter fence to prevent Palestinian protesters from approaching the perimeter fence with Israel as part of understandings to avoid escalation.

It is worth mentioning that the soldiers also fired several live rounds at filed control post, east of Rafah, in southern Gaza Strip.

The Al-Qassam Brigades issued a statement accusing Israel of deliberately killing the Palestinian, and said that “it is evaluating the situation, and its response to the grave Israeli violation.”

His death comes after a period of relative calm along the perimeter fence, especially after the indirect “ceasefire understandings” between Hamas and Israel, to avoid tension along the fence.

He was one of the dozens of officers, and fighters, tasked with preventing any Palestinian from reaching the perimeter fence or attempting to cross it.

In a statement, the Israeli army admitted it shot and killed the fighter, after claiming that the incident was a “mistake stemming from a misunderstanding,” and added that “it will investigate it.”

As part of these understandings, Israel increased the fishing zone in the coastal region to fifteen nautical miles, a move that was described by Israeli officials as aiming at “preventing humanitarian deterioration,” in the already besieged and impoverished Gaza Strip.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Soldiers Shoot Two Palestinians, Abduct One, In Deheishe Refugee Camp

11 JUL3:23 PM

Dozens of Israeli soldiers invaded, on Thursday at dawn, the Deheishe refugee camp, south of Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, shot and injured two Palestinians, and abducted one.

Media sources in Deheishe said the soldiers first infiltrated into the camp using two civilian cars, before many jeeps invaded it and attacked
Palestinian protesters with live rounds, rubber-coated steel bullets, gas bombs and concussion grenades.

They added that the soldiers injured two young Palestinian men with live fire, caused several others to suffer the effects of teargas inhalation, and abducted a young man, identified as Ismael Sami al-Ja’fari.

In related news, the soldiers invaded the Shiokh town, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and violently searched many homes.
No’man al-Hasasna, said the soldiers caused serious damage to his furniture and the doors of his house, in addition to smashing many windows in the property.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Israeli Soldiers Remove Solidarity Tent In Jerusalem, Injure Dozens Of Palestinians

11 JUL7:00 PM

Israeli soldiers attacked, on Thursday afternoon, the solidarity tent in Wad al-Hummus area, in Sur Baher town, south of occupied Jerusalem, and forcibly demolished and removed it, in addition to firing many gas bombs and concussion grenades, casing dozens of Palestinians to suffer the effects of teargas inhalation, and burning farmlands, the Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan (Silwanic) has reported.

Media sources said the soldiers fired a barrage of gas bombs and concussion grenades at the Palestinians, nonviolently protesting in the tent, demanding Israel to void its plans to demolish more than 230 apartments and displace the families.

|Israeli High Court Rules Against Palestinian Families; Will Allow Their Homes to be Demolished|

They added that dozens of Palestinians suffered the effects of teargas inhalation, in addition to cuts and bruises, after being assaulted by the soldiers.

Fire also broke out in Palestinian lands, burning many trees and plants due to the intensity of the Israeli gas bombs and concussion grenades.

The soldiers also invaded the al-‘Isawiya town, in Jerusalem, and abducted a young man, identified as Ahmad al-Masri.

In addition, dozens of soldiers and officers stormed Wad Yasoul neighborhood in Silwan town, in Jerusalem, and attacked many Palestinians, in addition to removing Palestinian flags.

The soldiers, accompanied by workers of the Jerusalem City Council, also invaded many streets in the al-‘Isawiya town, before attacking many Palestinians, and removed Palestinian flags in addition to poster of Mohammad Samir Obeid, 21, who was killed by the army on June 27th.

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(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Illegal settlers take over Palestinian-owned building in Jerusalem neighborhood

Israeli settlers took over today a Palestinian-owned building in Suwwana area on the Mount of Olives in occupied East Jerusalem, according to local sources.

They told that Israeli police escorted the settlers in their takeover of the building that houses four apartments and owned by Ihab Mahdar.

Settlers were seen removing furniture from the building and throwing it in the street.

No further details were available on the takeover.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Report: 3,987 Palestinian refugees killed in Syria since 2011

Tens of them starved to tortured to death in Syrian

At least 3,626 Palestinian refugees have been killed in Syria between March 2011 and June 2019, the Action Group for Palestinians in Syria revealed on Tuesday.

The number included the Palestinian refugees killed in attacks in the war-torn country, in prisons and during the migration journeys.

According to the Action Group, 1,977 were killed in refugee camps – an increase of 24 victims when compared to last year.

Nearly 75 per cent of the refugees killed were from Yarmouk refugee camp, amounting to 1,422, the group said, stating that scores starved to death as a result of the siege on the area.

Daraa witnessed the death of 263, Khan Al-Sheikh 202, Aleppo 168 and Al-Hussainiyeh 124, it revealed.

Some 188 refugees whose residence is unknown were also killed.

The group said that 1,212 were killed in air strikes, 1,077 were died after being shot, 604 were tortured to death in Syrian prisons, 311 died after being targeted by snipers and 205 died as a result of starvation and lack of medical care.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Rights group: 450 Palestinian refugees live in ‘harsh conditions’ on Greek island

The number of Palestinians there is well above the camp’s normal capacity

At least 450 Palestinian refugees who fled from war in Syria now live in harsh condition on Greek island of Chios, Action Group for Palestinian Refugees in Syria revealed on Tuesday.

The refugees are in Al-Qarora Camp on the island after their movements were blocked by the Greek authorities.

According to the Action Group, the camp is not equipped with any facilities for hosting refugees, many of whom sleep in the open air because of the overcrowding and lack of tents.

The number of Palestinians there is well above the camp’s normal capacity.

The refugees have called upon the UN and other international institutions to intervene in order to end their suffering and provide a better life for their women and children.

The Greek authorities, meanwhile, have been accused of marginalising the Palestinian refugees deliberately, and delaying official recognition of their status.

Unofficial statistics reported by the Action Group put the number of Palestinian refugees from Syria who are distributed across the Greek islands at around 4,000 people.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Israeli sniper shot Palestinian security officer in Gaza

Al-Adham, 28, married to Noura al-Adham and father of three kids aged between two to six years old

An Israeli occupation sniper shot dead on Thursday morning Palestinian security officer near the eastern side of the northern Gaza city of Beit Lahiya.

The Palestinian ministry of health in Gaza identified the officer as Mahmoud al-Adham, 28, married to Noura al-Adham and father of three kids aged between two to six years old.

In a statement, the Palestinian interior ministry said that Al-Adham was carrying his duty when he was shot by the Israeli sniper.

Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas military wing, pledged that shooting Al-Adham “will not go unpunished because the Israeli occupation sniper shot him from a close range and he could identify Al-Adham was a security officer.”

Hamas warned that “if the Israeli violations did not stop, it would suspend the truce agreement and stop the Israeli crimes.”

Throughout the past year and a half, the Israeli occupation has carried out several offensives on Gaza, with Israel launching airstrikes, tank shelling and artillery bombing that killed tens of Palestinians, sparking retaliatory rocket fire by the Palestinian resistance towards Israel.

Later on Thursday, the Israeli occupation military claimed a misunderstanding led its troops to kill a member of Hamas “as he was trying to prevent Palestinian youths from breaching the security fence earlier in the day.”

The highly irregular acknowledgment of such a mistake appeared to be an effort by the Israeli occupation to calm tensions with Hamas and prevent another round of violence.

“This morning, IDF soldiers spotted a number of Palestinians in the area of the security fence in the northern Strip. An initial investigation determined that it was a member of Hamas’s restraint force who had come to the area because of two Palestinians who were moving toward [the fence],” the army said in a statement.

The Israeli soldiers opened fire at the Hamas field commander, Mahmoud al-Adham, 28, fatally wounding him. He was pronounced dead shortly thereafter.

“The IDF troops who arrived in the area had identified the restraint operative as an armed terrorist and opened fire due to a misunderstanding. The incident will be investigated,” the army said.

Israeli army statement was released shortly after the various resistance groups in the Gaza Strip convened their joint operations committee to discuss a possible retaliation to the incident, according to Palestinian media reports.

(Source / 11.07.2019) 

Israeli settlers set fire to hundreds of olive trees in West Bank

The settlers, who were protected by the Israeli occupation forces, damaged many of the trees before burning them

Israeli occupation settlers set fire on Thursday to hundreds of olive trees in northern West Bank village of Burin, local sources reported.

Activist Ghassan Daghlass said that settlers set fire to hundreds of olive trees in the southern parts of the village of Burin, south of Nablus.

The settlers, who were protected by the Israeli occupation forces, descended from the illegal Israeli Jewish settlement of Yitzhar and damaged many of the trees before burning them.

Daghlass said the Israeli army prevented Palestinian firetrucks from reaching the area to put off the fire, making it to expand and cause heavy losses to the Palestinian farmers.

(Source / 11.07.2019)