Israel coerces Palestine kids into confessing: Rights group

The Israeli regime subjects arrested Palestinian children to cruel torment to obtain “coerced” confessions from them, a children’s rights group says.

“The Israeli military detention system subjects Palestinian children to several days of prolonged interrogation and isolation with the apparent goal of obtaining a confession at all costs,” said Ayed Abu Qtaish, the director of Accountability Program at the Palestine section of Defense for Children International (DCI).

The rights organization further said the Palestinian child detainees spent an average of 15 days in solitary confinement in 2014, adding that one of the Palestinian kids captured by Tel Aviv regime forces had been kept as many as 26 days in isolation for interrogation purposes.

“The military courts admit these coerced confessions as evidence to convict these children in a complete mockery of due process and fair trial standards,” the group added.

The group also said that Israel kept in excess of 56 Palestinian children, who had no right to be accompanied by an adult, in solitary confinement between 2012 and 2014.

The Israeli forces take the Palestinian kids to interrogation centers blindfolded and over 75 percent of the detainees suffer some form of physical violence, the rights body added.

The UN children’s fund, UNICEF, said in a 22-page report in February 2013 that the Israeli regime’s interrogation techniques mix “intimidation, threats and physical violence, with the clear purpose of forcing the child to confess.”

“Children have been threatened with death, physical violence, solitary confinement and sexual assault, against themselves or a family member,” the international body said, adding that the minors in Israeli detention were restrained during the questioning even for extended periods of time.

The Military Court Watch, a Palestinian legal monitoring group, also said in a report that at least 151 Palestinian children are currently being held in Israeli jails in violation of the Geneva Conventions.

On February 4, the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) said 11 Palestinian teenagers were detained when Israeli forces carried out a raid against their homes in the occupied West Bank and East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

More than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently held in some 17 Israeli jails, dozens of whom are serving multiple life sentences. About 540 Palestinians are being held without trial under the so-called administrative detention.


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