Five Palestinian minors were physically assaulted and suffered aggression at the hands of Israeli soldiers and interrogators during detention, according to the Palestinian Commission of Detainees’ and ex-Detainees’ Affairs.
The Commission said statements from the minors, who were all 17-year-olds, include details of severe beatings and torture they suffered following their arrest.
Mustafa Salameh was detained at his family home in Azzoun town, east of the northern West Bank city of Qalqilya. He was beaten with the butt of guns and shoved into an army jeep where he was thrown on the floor as soldiers kept trampling on him until he lost consciousness.
He woke up to find himself in Al-Jalama detention centre where he was interrogated for many hours, while being tied to a chair before being moved to the Megiddo prison for minors.
Mohammad Zalloum was dragged out of his home from the village of Silwan. He recounted being punched in the stomach till he vomited, and was later moved to Asqalan detention centre where he was detained for 23 days.
Another victim, Hani Rmeilat, from Jenin refugee camp in the north of the West Bank, was interrogated in difficult conditions at Al-Jalama detention centre, and assaulted with clubs by five prison guards resulting in bruises all over his body that required immediate treatment at an Israeli hospital.
However, he was forced back to Al-Jalama prison where he was detained for 20 days before being moved to Megiddo prison.
Majd Waari from Jerusalem’s Beit Hanina neighbourhood suffered hours long interrogation at the infamous Russian Compound detention centre in West Jerusalem for several hours while tied to a small chair.
Munir Arqoub from Kufr Ein, north of Ramallah, was detained at the Beit El military checkpoint after being attacked by three Israeli soldiers before he was taken to a nearby military base. There he was left in an open area during cold weather conditions and denied sleep. He was moved to Ofer military camp the next day for interrogation and then moved to Majeddo prison.
The commission noted that the mistreatment of prisoners is part of a “systematic and clear policy practiced by the administration of the occupation detention centres in order to restrict prisoners and detainees and impose sanctions on them and deprive them of the most basic human rights.”
Israeli occupation authorities launch almost daily arrest campaigns in the occupied West Bank, releasing some detainees after interrogation and referring others to court.
Around 4,400 Palestinians are currently languishing in Israeli jails, including 40 women, 170 children, and 380 people under administrative detention with no charges or trials.