[Ppnews] UN: Palestinian Children Tortured, Used As Shields By Israel
Political Prisoner News
ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Fri Jun 21 15:44:14 EDT 2013
UN: Palestinian Children Tortured, Used As Shields By Israel
Published on Friday, 21 June 2013 12:48
A United Nations human rights body accused Israeli forces on Thursday of
mistreating Palestinian children, including by torturing those in
custody and using others as human shields.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child said Palestinian children in
the occupied West Bank and blockaded Gaza Strip, captured by Israel in
the 1967 war, are normally not allowed to have their birth registered,
and are denied access to health care, decent schooling as well as safe
"Palestinian children arrested by (Israeli) military and police are
systematically subject to degrading treatment, and often to acts of
torture, are interrogated in Hebrew, a language they did not understand,
and sign confessions in Hebrew in order to be released," it said in a
The UN committee also expressed regret over Israel's "persistent
refusal" to respond to requests for information on children in the
Palestinian territories and occupied Golan Heights since the last review
"Hundreds of Palestinian children have been killed and thousands injured
over the reporting period as a result of Israel military operations,
especially in Gaza where Israel proceeded to [conduct] air and naval
strikes on densely populated areas with a significant presence of
children, thus disregarding the principles of proportionality and
distinction," the report stated.
The UN report also stated that an estimated 7,000 Palestinian children
aged 12 to 17, but some as young as nine, have been arrested,
interrogated and detained over the past ten years.
Many are brought in leg chains and shackles before military courts,
while youths are held in solitary confinement, sometimes for months, the
It voiced deep concern at the "continuous use of Palestinian children as
human shields and informants", saying 14 such cases had been reported
between January 2010 and March 2013 alone.
Israeli soldiers had used Palestinian children to enter potentially
dangerous buildings and forced them to stand in front of military
vehicles to deter stone-throwing, it said.
"Almost all those using children as human shields and informants have
remained unpunished and the soldiers convicted for having forced at
gunpoint a nine-year-old child to search bags suspected of containing
explosives only received a suspended sentence of three months and were
Israel's "illegal long-standing occupation" of Palestinian territory and
the Golan Heights, continued expansion of "unlawful" settlements,
construction of the separation fence into the West Bank, land
confiscation and destruction of homes and livelihoods "constitute severe
and continuous violations of the rights of Palestinian children and
their families," it said.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry reacted angrily to the UN Committee on the
Rights of the Child report, and described it as "recycled old stuff."
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