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Home » Children »

Testimony: M.J.M.

 Name: M.J.M.
 Age: 13 years
 Date of incident: 3 December 2014
 Location: Tuqu’, West Bank
 Accusation: Throwing stones

On 3 December 2014, a 13-year-old boy from Tuqu’, in the West Bank, is arrested by Israeli soldiers at 1.30 a.m. and accused of throwing stones.  

“I was asleep when my father woke me and told me that Israeli soldiers had come to arrest me. It was 1.30 a.m. I got up and found the soldiers were inside our house. One of the soldiers told me to get dressed because they were going to arrest me. I heard the soldiers tell my father I was accused of throwing stones and that they were going to question me for a few hours at Etzion police station and then return me. They gave my father a document and then took me on foot towards the centre of the village where the military jeeps were waiting."
 
"As I was being led to the jeeps a soldier swore at me and called my mother a whore. I was then blindfolded and tied to the front with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and one connecting the two. The ties were not painful. I was then taken into the back of a jeep where I sat on the seat. The jeep remained stationary for about an hour.”
 
“After an hour the jeep then drove for about 10 minutes and then stopped. I was able to see from under the blindfold that we were at an Israeli military base. I was taken out of the jeep and was made to sit on the ground with other detainees. It was a cold night. I remained on the ground for about an hour. A soldier then took me to see a doctor. The soldier removed the blindfold and the doctor asked me if I suffered from any illnesses. When the doctor was done I was blindfolded again and taken back to the courtyard where I sat on the ground. I remained there until 6.00 a.m. The soldiers allowed me to use the bathroom. At around 6.00 a.m. I was taken back to the jeep which drove for about 15 minutes. I was told we had arrived at the police station inside the settlement of Etzion.”
 
 “At Etzion I was put in a courtyard near the interrogation rooms. They made me sit on the ground for about 15 minutes. I was then taken to an interrogation room. The interrogator wore civilian clothes. He sat me down on a chair and removed the blindfold and the ties. He immediately started to interrogate me and did not inform me of any rights. He accused me of throwing stones at soldiers and showed me a photograph. The photograph was taken by soldiers. I told the interrogator the photograph was not of me. He laughed.”
 
“The interrogator then started to type on his computer while reading out loud what he was typing. He said that I had given him the names of other boys and young people from my village. He named them and said that I had confessed that they were throwing stones although I never said anything of the sort. I told him what he was writing was not true.”
 
“The first round of interrogation lasted for about an hour. Then the interrogator left the room and another interrogator walked in. The second interrogator shouted a lot and seemed aggressive. He accused me of throwing stones at soldiers. When I denied the accusation he slapped me on the face and kicked me in the leg. I was scared and decided to confess. I confessed to throwing stones on one occasion but I did not mention any names to him. When the interrogation was over he told me I had the right to consult with a lawyer. He asked me for my father’s number and allowed me to speak to my father. I asked my father to appoint a lawyer and that I was going to appear in the military court the same day. The interrogator then printed out a document in Hebrew and asked me to sign it. He did not translate it for me.”
 
“The interrogator then photographed and fingerprinted me. A soldier then handcuffed me and put me in a troop carrier. The vehicle drove for about an hour before stopping at Ofer prison, near Ramallah. On arrival at Ofer I was immediately taken to the military court. A lawyer was there to represent me. The lawyer asked for the hearing to be adjourned. My parents did not attend the hearing. I was then strip searched and taken to Section 13 where I stayed with other detainees my age. I had two other military court hearings. My parents did not attend any of them. On the last hearing my lawyer asked the military court to be satisfied with the time I had already spent in prison. The military court accepted this but imposed a fine of 2,000 Shekels. My lawyer was able to reduce the fine to 1,000 Shekels. I was released from Ofer prison on 24 December 2014 and went home with my father.”