Detention of Palestinian Children on the Rise during Pandemic
At the end of March, there were 194 Palestinian children imprisoned by Israel, an increase of 6% compared to last January, reports Defense for Children International Palestine (DCI).
Sixty percent of them are in pre-trial detention, an incredible measure given the risks of contagion they run, says the association which, like the UN agencies, is calling for the release of all Palestinian children imprisoned by Israel.
As a reminder, Israel is the only country in the world to submit children to military courts, from the age of 12, children who are generally ill-treated and tortured during their arrest and interrogation.
And among the first cases of coronavirus tested by Israel, the young Palestinian Nour Eddin Sarsour, 19, detained for 2 weeks in Ofer prison and contaminated by an Israeli guard.
As for the Palestinian children who were transferred from Ofer prison to Damon prison in Israel, they were dropped in Section 1, long abandoned and infested with cockroaches and all kinds of insects. A section that has neither ventilation nor daylight is made up of five cramped cells, three of which have no windows and two of which have two tiny windows each.
The ceilings of these cells are too low and the cells are too small, not to mention the particularly foul odor that hangs over the section, says a report by the Committee of Prisoners and Former Palestinian Prisoners.
“Transferred children have absolutely nothing to meet their most basic needs. They have no way of heating water or any cooking utensil. The only thing allowed was to take their clothes and blankets with them.
“And when the children rebelled, hammering the doors of the cells with their fists, and shouting, it was repression that fell upon them. “They were brutally beaten and then handcuffed for very long periods, and even sprayed with pepper spray,” said the committee.
Their meager possessions were also confiscated, and some of them were later transferred to Jalameh prison, which has an equally sinister reputation.
DCI calls upon all of us to sign this petition: http://nwttac.dci-palestine.
Distributed by PAJU (Palestinian and Jewish Unity)