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4 Israel soldiers arrested for beating, sexually assaulting Palestine detainee

Israeli-run Jerusalem Municipality team along with Israeli soldiers and bulldozers demolish the house owned by a disabled Palestinian Hatim Abu Rayala (R), near the al-Issawiya neighborhood claiming that it was unlicensed, in East Jerusalem on 1 March 2021. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]
Israeli soldiers on 1 March 2021 [Mostafa Alkharouf/Anadolu Agency]

Four Israeli soldiers from the ultra-Orthodox Netzah Yehuda Battalion of the Kfir Brigade have been arrested for beating and sexually assaulting a Palestinian detainee.

The group, stationed in the northern occupied West Bank city of Jenin, are accused of assaulting a Palestinian man while he was detained about two weeks ago at a West Bank army base.

The suspected Israeli soldiers punched and slapped the Palestinian detainee, while another pressed his gun on the detainee's behind, reported the Times of Israel.

The Palestinian detainee, whose identity is unknown, along with the reason for his detention, was handcuffed and blindfolded during the abuse and moved to a prison, where he underwent a medical examination. The doctor reported the case after noticing bruises, prompting the investigation.

Ten Israeli soldiers were initially arrested by the Israeli military but six have since been released.

The Israeli army confirmed an investigation into the case was ongoing, claiming the Palestinian detainee was examined by medical staff at both the

The Netzah Yehuda Battalion has a history of right-wing violence against Palestinians. In 2019, three Israeli soldiers were arrested after they beat two Palestinian detainees, a 50-year-old father and his 15-year-old son.

READ: Israel seizes more Palestinian land to expand settlements 

The Israeli soldiers also forced the boy to watch his father being beaten to the point of losing consciousness, with the teen recalling: "I saw them breaking my father's ribs by beating him in the chest with gun barrels. My hands were tied behind my back, I could not do anything."

In 2016, a Netzah Yehuda soldier was sentenced to nine months in prison for torturing a Palestinian suspect; blindfolding, handcuffing and attaching electrodes to his victim then setting off electric currents.

In 2015, an Israeli soldier from the same battalion was sentenced to 21 days in military prison for celebrating the murder of 18-month-old Palestinian Ali Dawabsheh at a wedding. In a video of the incident, wedding guests could be seen dancing with guns and stabbing a photo of Ali. The soldier was thought to have links to Amiram Ben-Uliel, the extremist Israeli settler believed to have carried out the firebomb attack that killed Ali and his parents, leaving his five-year-old brother Ahmed orphaned.

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