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22.10.10

Stan van Houcke: Israel als Schurkenstaat 294

Waarom zouden het NOS-Journaal of de NRC nooit enige informatie verstrekken over de positie van Palestijnse kinderen? Is er een afspraak, een complot? Ik bedoel, ze berichten wel regelmatig over Iraanse dissidenten die schandelijk worden behandeld. Waarom dan niet over Palestijnse kinderen die door de 'Joodse staat' worden gemaltraiteerd? Mag het niet vand e directie of zwijgen de journalisten vrijwillig?

Defence for Children International bericht:

Voices From The Occupation

Name: Karam D.
Date of Arrest: 22 September 2010
Age at arrest: 13 years
Accusation: Throwing stones



On 22 September 2010, a 13-year-old boy from Hebron, in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, is arrested by Israeli soldiers on his way home from school and later accused of throwing stones at a settler car. A military court orders house detention and no school.

Thirteen-year-old Karam lives in the Old City of Hebron. "My house is only 100 metres away from the settlement of Kiryat Arba, and settlers walk by our house every day," says Karam. On 22 September 2010, at around 12 noon, Karam was walking home from school. "I was in front of my grandfather's store located near the road used by settlers. Suddenly, two Israeli soldiers grabbed me. Things were calm at the time and I hadn't done anything wrong." Karam was dragged 60 metres by the soldiers and was then punched and slapped, but "not hard" he says. "I was scared and crying. I didn't know what they would do to me." The soldiers accused Karam of throwing stones at a settler car, which he denies, and they continued to beat him for about five minutes.

Shortly afterwards, Karam’s hands were tied in front of him with plastic ties and he was blindfolded. He was then made to sit on the ground against a wall for two hours. "I felt very exhausted," recalls Karam, "and kept wondering what would happen to me. I was very scared. It was the first time I went through something like this. I was hungry and thirsty because I had been at school all morning." After about two hours, Karam was put in an Israeli police car and taken to the nearby police station of Ja’bara, in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. "I knew it was a police car," says Karam, "because a policeman lifted my blindfold and asked for my name." A short time later Karam arrived at the police station and after another 30 minutes, was taken for interrogation. "I was made to sit on a wooden seat in front of the table. He [the interrogator] sat behind the table. "Why do you throw stones?" he asked. "I didn't," I said. "Yes you did, you threw stones at a settler's car," he said. "No I didn't," I said once again. He then started shouting at me: "Liar," he shouted. "I'm not a liar," I said."

Karam was interrogated for around 15 minutes and was then made to sit in a corridor. Shortly afterwards, one of Karam’s neighbours came to the police station and tried to persuade the police to release Karam because he is young and didn’t do anything wrong. Karam’s father was still at work at the time. After another hour of discussion, the police eventually released Karam into the custody of his neighbour. As they walked home, the pair bumped into Karam’s father who had heard about his son’s arrest and was rushing to the police station. "My father thanked our neighbour for his efforts to get me out of the police station," remembers Karam.

"The next day," recalls Karam, "I skipped school because of my eldest sister's engagement party. At around 10:00am, Israeli soldiers surrounded our house and an officer ordered my grandfather to bring me outside. I wasn't scared that much," says Karam, "because we've got used to soldiers." Karam was again put in a police car and taken to Ja’bara Police Station. Karam’s father, Khaled, insisted on accompanying his son, and the soldiers allowed him to do so. On arrival at the police station, father and son were separated, and Karam was again taken for interrogation. "I want you to tell me how you threw stones at a settler's car and with whom," asked the interrogator. Again, Karam denied that he had any involvement in throwing stones. After the interrogation, Karam was made to sit in a corridor for about four hours until two policemen came and shackled his hands and blindfolded him before placing him in a vehicle and transporting him to Ofer Prison, near Ramallah, in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. Whilst his son was being interrogated, Khaled was being held in a shipping container before being sent home alone. On arrival at Ofer Prison, Karam was placed in Room Number 5 with six adult detainees.

Over the course of the next week, Karam was taken to Ofer Military Court on three separate occasions before being released on a surety of 2,000 shekels (US $500) on 28 September 2010. Karam’s father says the court also imposed an additional condition of "putting Karam under home arrest at his uncle's house, which is about 100 metres away from our house and further away from the road used by the settlers. Karam is not allowed to go to school during the home arrest." Karam says the ruling is "very tough and I don't know whether I will be able to handle it. I don't know how I can be away from my house. I won't pass the semester. I won't be able to go to the store or my friend's house. I'm very upset because of this. My family is very upset as well." The military court ordered that Karam remain under home arrest at his uncle’s house until further notice.

Since 1967, Palestinian children as young as 12 years have been prosecuted in Israeli military courts in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and transferred to prisons inside Israel. For further information please see DCI-Palestine’s Child Prisoner Report.

20 October 2010

(Bronnen: Defence for Children International, pdf, Stan van Houcke)

Televisiejournalist Chris Rogers ontving een prijs van Amnesty International voor een ITV-documentaire over Palestijnse kinderen in Israƫlische gevangenissen (2007). Hier een nieuwsitem van zijn hand over hetzelfde onderwerp: