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Home » Children »

Testimony: S.O.R.G.

 

Name: S.O.R.G.
Age: 16
Date: 22 February 2022
Location: Al Jalazun, West Bank
Accusation: Throwing Molotov cocktail

On 22 February 2022, a 16-year-old minor from Al Jalazun refugee camp was arrested by Israeli soldiers from home at 4:00 a.m. He reports briefly consulting with a lawyer prior to interrogation but not being informed of his right to silence by the interrogator. 

Israeli soldiers broke into our home at around 4:00 a.m. without making any sound. They quietly opened our front door using a special device and entered while we were asleep. I woke up to the sound of soldiers inside our house. 
 
One of the soldiers called my name and asked my parents about me. Then he asked to see my identity card. Then he told my father I was under arrest and gave him a document filled out in Hebrew. He did not tell us the reason for the arrest.
 
Then they searched our house and caused damage to the furniture and the walls. They said they were looking for weapons but did not find anything. After spending about 15 minutes inside our house one of the soldiers tied my hands to the front with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and another connecting the two. The ties were very tight and painful. My hands swelled and turned blue. 
 
Then they walked me towards the settlement of Bet El. On the way soldiers slapped me on the face and kicked me in my legs. They also swore at me and called me "a son of a whore". One of them also struck me on the head with the back of his gun. At the entrance to the settlement a soldier blindfolded me then they took me into a fenced outdoor area and left me there for about two hours. After two hours I was put in a troop carrier and taken to the police station in Binyamin settlement. I sat on a seat.
 
At Binyamin I was taken to a small cell for a day. The cell measured about 1x1 meters and did not have any windows. It had a dim light. I slept on a small chair. I was not given any food and was not allowed to use the toilet but I was given some water. Then I was taken for interrogation.
 
I was handcuffed but a soldier removed the blindfold. The interrogator wore a police uniform. He told me I had the right to consult with a lawyer and then he phoned a lawyer for me. The lawyer told me I had the right to remain silent and told me not to be afraid. We spoke for about a minute.
 
The interrogator asked me what I had done and did not inform me of my right to silence. Then he accused me of throwing a Molotov cocktail at the settlement. He gave me a specific date for the incident. I denied the accusation. Then he showed me some photographs and thumped the table and told me to confess. He questioned me for about three hours and was aggressive. He raised his voice and accused me of lying. In the end I confessed. After confessing the interrogator asked me to sign a document in Hebrew but I refused to sign.
 
After the interrogation I was taken to Ofer prison where I was strip searched before being taken to section 13. 
 
My first military court hearing was the following day. It was on zoom and my parents did not attend because they did not know I had a hearing on that day. My detention was extended. I had about 10 hearings. About a month before I was released I was sentenced in a plea bargain to five months in prison and fined NIS 1,000. I was also given a suspended sentence but I don't know the details. My father was able to get my sentence reduced by one month by paying another NIS 1,000.
 
About three weeks before I was released I was transferred to Damoun prison, inside Israel. I did not have any family visits and I am not sure why. In prison I exercised and took lots of showers. I was given early release on 10 April 2022 and I was released at Salem checkpoint. I went home in a taxi; my parents were not there to meet me. I arrived home in the evening and my father paid the taxi driver.