17 June 2013
AL KHALIL (HEBRON): Soldiers take away young boy in Old City to grill him for
7:00 p.m. on 16 June 2013, CPT received a phone call telling them that Israeli
soldiers were questioning children whom they believed had been throwing rocks
at the soldier on the roof near the CPT office. CPTers entered the street near their apartment saw the
soldiers questioning two boys. The
soldiers then left those two, saying that they were looking for another
boy. The soldiers went around
through the tunnels in the old city and returned to the area near the CPT
offices. They then questioned
another boy and demanded he go with them.
The boy started to cry and an older man intervened, removing the boy
from the custody of the soldiers. The
soldiers then started to re-question the two boys that they had been talking to
CPTers took photos of the soldiers questioning the boys and
a soldier threatened to break their cameras. They asked the soldier on the roof to identify the boy who
threw stones. The soldiers told
one of the boys to go away and put the arm around the other boy, who was
approximately eight years old, and led him to the settlement of Beit Romano
where there took him in behind the gate.
A woman, who was a relative of the boy, came to the gate to see the boy.
When soldiers would not let her
see him, she was visibly distressed.
The soldiers then sat the boy on the pavement behind the
gate as they continued to question him.
More than an hour after they had detained him, the soldiers released him
into the custody of the Palestinian Authority (PA) through Checkpoint 56. During the whole time that they held
the boy, he did not have a parent, guardian, lawyer, or any sympathetic adult
with him. CPTers asked the
soldiers why the boy had been taken and if he was going to be released. The
soldiers said that they had taken the boy, because he had thrown stones at the
soldiers and that they had given the boy a glass of water. The soldiers said that it is Israeli
procedure to take children accused of throwing stones and question them before
handing the children over to the PA.
The Palestinian Authority released him into the custody of his parents.
According to Defence for
Children International (DCI), an independent non-governmental
organization based in Geneva, Switzerland, since the beginning of this year
arrests of Palestinian children by the Israeli authorities have increased by
seventeen percent. Human rights groups say that
particularly in Hebron violations of international law with regard to the
detentions and arrest of children happen on a daily basis.