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Palestinian Boy Recounts His Experience Under Israeli Custody

Health & Wellness  (tags: Israeli occupation forces, palestinian human rights violations, media, Palestinian children's rights, administrative detention, international law, BDS, news, treatment, activists, world, usa, middle-east, palestine, UnitedNations, Refugees&Relief )

- 440 days ago -
At the beginning, he said he was not informed of his right to silence or his right to consult with a lawyer prior to interrogation


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fly bird (26)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 6:14 pm
Palestinian Boy Recounts His Experience Under Israeli Custody.
February 7, 2018

On 21 October, 2017, a 16-year-old boy from Tuqu was abducted by Israeli occupation forces. Following, now, is his report of what happened to him and how Israeli occupation forces mistreated him.

At the beginning, he said he was not informed of his right to silence or his right to consult with a lawyer prior to interrogation.

“I was up late studying when I heard a commotion outside the house. It was around 2:30am. Then, I heard loud banging at the front door. My father answered and four Israeli soldiers entered our home while dozens more surrounded the house. The soldiers were accompanied by my uncle who showed them the way.

“A soldier asked for my father’s identity card and looked at the annex where his children are listed. When they read my name, the commander told my father they wanted to take me for 15 minutes to ask me some questions and would then bring me back. The commander did not say what he wanted to question me about and did not give my parents any documents.

“I put some clothes on and said goodbye to my parents and the soldiers took me outside where they handcuffed me to the front with metal handcuffs. The handcuffs were not painful.

“I was then led for about 50 meters to a waiting jeep where I was blindfolded. At first, I was made to sit on a seat but then I was told to sit on the metal floor. Once inside the jeep a soldier slapped me on the face but not too hard. The jeep took me to the nearby military base.

“When we arrived at the base I was taken to a room where I sat on a chair until around 8:00 a.m. I was not able to sleep. At around 8:00am. I was taken to the police station in Etzion settlement for interrogation.”

Insider Israeli police station

“As soon as I arrived at the police station a soldier introduced himself and told me he was the Area Commander. He named someone and said that this person had confessed against me saying that we had thrown stones together on four occasions. I denied the accusation and I was then taken to an interrogation room. The Area Commander did not tell me I had any rights.

“The interrogator wore a police uniform and had a camera and a tape recorder in the room. He removed the blindfold and the handcuffs and asked me whether I needed anything. He asked me whether I threw stones at soldiers and I told him I did not. He kept repeating the questions again and again and I continued to deny the accusation.

“Half way through the interrogation he called a lawyer and allowed me to speak to him. The lawyer told me not to confess. The interrogator told me I had the right to say whatever I wanted. The interrogator also told me that I had to tell him everything I had done because he knew everything about me anyway. He did not tell me I had the right to silence.

“The police interrogator questioned me for about three hours. After a while I got fed up and wanted to get over with it so I confessed to throwing a stone from a distance of 500 meters. I was very tired and felt he was not going to let me go until I confessed.”

Confession under pressure

“After I confessed the interrogator printed out a document in Hebrew and asked me to sign it. I refused to sign and asked him to provide me with a translation in Arabic which he did. I then signed the document. He asked me whether I had anything to add and I said no.

“Then I was taken to another room where they took my photograph and fingerprints. Then I was taken to see another interrogator.

“The second interrogator did not inform me of any rights and showed me some photographs. He wanted me to confess against the boys in the photographs. I told him I did not know them. He warned me that if I lied to him he was going to send me to a third interrogator. He showed me albums with lots of photographs and then took me to see a third interrogator.

“The third interrogator did not inform me of my rights and wanted me to give him the names of the boys in the photos. I told him I did not know any of them. Then he wanted me to tell him who has weapons in the village.

“Then he showed me a satellite image of the village and pointed to houses on the map and wanted me to tell him who lived in those houses and who owned weapons. Then he claimed I had planned to stab a soldier and wanted to know what I was thinking at the time when I kept a knife with me. I told him I never kept a knife with me and I never intended to stab anyone. I told him this was my honest truthful answer.

“Then he showed me more photos and told me if I really wanted to help myself and go home I had to give him names. I told him I had no names to give. At this point he became angry and banged the table and put his hand on his pistol and told me the only choice left for him was to shoot me in the head. He slapped me on the face and swore at god. Then he called a soldier and told him to take me out.

“The three interrogations lasted for about six hours in total and I was without food or drink the whole time.”

Strip search

“After the final interrogation I was strip searched and asked to crouch up and down while naked. I was then taken to a room where I stayed for about 30 minutes. During this time I asked for something to eat and they brought me some food. After about 30 minutes I was shackled and handcuffed and taken in a vehicle to Ofer prison.

“On arrival at Ofer prison I was searched with my clothes on and I was given a prison uniform. I was then taken to Section 13.

“Three days later I was taken to Ofer military court. My lawyer was there and the hearing was adjourned. On the second hearing my lawyer told me I was going to be released and that I had to pay a fine of 2,000 shekels. She told me if I did not pay the fine I would have to spend four months in prison. My parents paid the fine and I was released on 1 November 2017.

“My lawyer told me that the authorities would monitor my activities for six months and that they might come back and arrest me again. As I left prison a soldier swore at me and told me I was a “son of a whore” and that he did not want to see me ever again. He pushed and beat me on my chest, legs and back.

“It was a difficult experience and I still live in fear because the six-month probation period is still current. Whenever I hear sounds at night I worry that soldiers might be in the neighbourhood and will come and arrest me.”

~ Military Court Watch/Days of Palestine

Kathleen M (0)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 6:24 pm
Grimly and angrily noted. How can these f***ing jack-booted thugs get away with this?!! Thx for posting fly bird.

Animae C (508)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 6:30 pm

TY Fly

fly bird (26)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 6:34 pm
Doctors Without Borders: Detention of Minors Brings Mental Health Consequences.
January 19, 2018

Ashraf, a 17 years old Palestinian youth from Arroub refugee camp, to the north of Hebron in the occupied West Bank, was released from Israeli jail after spending one and a half year there.

Ashraf suffered from worry and anxiety about how he could continue his life following a long period far away from his previous, normal life and a separation from his friends and school. In fact, he started socializing less and less with his friends in order to avoid talking about the painful experience of arrest. He felt very discouraged after the imprisonment.

According to WAFA, Ashraf was a case the Paris-based international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) discussed in a study on the mental health consequences that minors can experience when they are detained and after being released from prison.

MSF explained that to be detained is an experience that can be described as highly unusual. “This experience usually comes with consequences — both during and after the detention — to the well-being of the person involved.”

It said the consequences on the well being of the person involved can be both physical and psychological, affecting both the individual and society.

MSF has found that after being released from detention many minors experience difficulties rejoining school.

Many factors are involved: the long period of separation from school and the habit of study; a decreased sense of the value of learning or continuing with it; difficulties in relating to former classmates; challenges in accepting authority figures due to bad experiences with them in prison; or, simply difficulties responding when they might be asked to tell “what happened” when they are still not ready to do that.

The humanitarian organization found that many of the minors that are released live with on-going real worries of being detained again.

This can result in the following consequences: difficulties to rest well; reduced appetite; increased frequency in smoking; nervousness; feelings of frustration and anger; among other psychological reactions.

Unfortunately, these thoughts and reactions, while common, diminish their capacity to positively re-integrate in the society and to move forward in their lives. This is why some of them might require support from a professional.

Ashraf had a sharp pain in his leg while he was in jail, for which he was in need of a surgery. One day, while he was in the hospital for medical examinations after being released, the military staged an incursion on his house, looking for Ashraf. Because he wasn’t there, the soldiers told his father that they would return to arrest him very soon. When Ashraf heard about what had happened he became more anxious, thinking all the time that they would come for him. He was unable to sleep. He became hyper alert, lost his motivation and isolated himself even more from others.

When MSF started to provide psychological support for him, he was very open to share his worries, realizing that he was overwhelmed by negative thoughts which made him feel stuck. He came to understand that the experience of imprisonment still had an impact on him, even though he had been released.

After few sessions of receiving the support of a mental health professional, together with his own resources, willingness and strength, he started to regain control over his thoughts and became more aware of his negative feelings and how to manage them. He also learnt how to get better quality sleep that ultimately allowed him to overcome his challenges and start doing things he wanted for his future.

The family, especially his mother, expressed that her son improved a lot in sleeping, controlling his emotions and being more motivated, as well as coming back to a normal routine and way of thinking. In fact she was thrilled about the result of the treatment, because she was afraid that her son might never be able to overcome this experience.

At the end Ashraf was able to succeed in planning and start taking the necessary steps for his future, he became close again to his friends and family.

Colleen L (3)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 9:12 pm
this awfulness must stop. Thanks Fly

Darren Woolsey (218)
Wednesday February 7, 2018, 10:00 pm
Shared over social media to raise and spread awareness.

Freya H (345)
Thursday February 8, 2018, 8:32 pm
It is high time that people and countries acknowledge the fact that Israel is a rogue nation.

Danuta W (1251)
Saturday February 10, 2018, 4:49 am
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