Israel Relocates 33 Palestinian Child Prisoners outside the West Bank in Violation of Law

185 children are currently held in Israeli prisons, according to Addameer. (Photo: File)

Israeli authorities transferred dozens of Palestinian child detainees outside the occupied West Bank to a prison inside Israel last week, in a move that the human rights NGO Defence for Children Palestine described as “amounting to a war crime”.

According to DCIP, on January 13, the Israel Prison Service (IPS) moved 33 Palestinian children from Ofer prison, located near Ramallah inside the occupied West Bank, to Damon prison, located near Haifa.

“The transfer of Palestinian child prisoners outside the occupied West Bank is a war crime,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, Accountability Programme Director at DCIP.

“Israeli authorities must only detain children as a measure of last resort for the shortest necessary period of time without transferring them outside the occupied West Bank”.

The Fourth Geneva Convention prohibits an occupying power transferring members of the occupied civilian population outside of the occupied territory, including detainees.

The children told their lawyers that they were held at Damon prison “in basement rooms with terrible conditions, including mice”, and during the first three days at Damon prison the children refused meals to protest the transfer and prison conditions”.

The children were relocated without any of their adult overseers and the decision had prompted strong protests by the prisoners who look after the minors.

According to the Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network Samidoun, “every year, around 700 Palestinian children are brought before Israeli military courts after being arrested, detained and interrogated. The vast majority report some form of torture and abuse, including kicking and beating in military jeeps as well as psychological torture during interrogation, including threats to arrest family members.”

185 children are currently held in Israeli prisons, according to Addameer.

(Palestine Chronicle, MEMO, Social Media)

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