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Testimony: M.M.M.J.


Name: M.M.M.J.
Age: 13
Date of incident: 15 March 2016
Location: Al 'Arrub camp, West Bank
Accusation: Throwing stones
On 15 March 2016, a 13-year-old boy from Al 'Arrub refugee camp is arrested by Israeli soldiers at 2:00 a.m. and accused of throwing stones.
I was asleep when I heard the sound of banging at the front door. It was 2:00 a.m. I got up and found Israeli soldiers inside the house. They wanted all of us to gather in the living room. They asked for our names and when I mentioned mine they told me they wanted to arrest me. My mother objected and told them I was too young to be arrested but the soldiers insisted on arresting me. They told me to get dressed and then gave my father a document. They also told him I was accused of throwing stones at soldiers.
They immediately took me outside the house and turned my face to the wall while they tied my hands to the back with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and another one connecting the two. The ties were tight. They also blindfolded me. I was taken on foot to the main road where I was terrified because I could hear the sound of a large number of soldiers. Then they took me to the back of a troop carrier where they made me sit on the floor. A soldier kept sticking his elbow into my back, and pushing my head down causing me a lot of pain.
The troop carrier drove towards a settlement near the village of Beit Ummar where a soldier took me to a room. On the way he deliberately tripped me and I fell on the ground and couldn’t get up because my hands were tied. The soldier then grabbed me from the arms and dragged me into the room. He made me sit on the floor. About 10 minutes later a soldier beat me on the shoulder with the back of his gun then on my neck and head.
When the soldiers left I tried to sleep but shortly afterwards a soldier came back and started to kick me. The soldier left the room and came back within five minutes and repeated this a number of times. He didn’t want me to fall asleep. Other soldiers swore at me and called me son of a fucking whore.
I remained in the room until around 10:00 a.m. when I was taken to the back of a jeep where I sat on the floor and driven for about 10 minutes to the police station in Etzion settlement. At Etzion I waited on a chair for a short while and then I was taken for interrogation.
The interrogator removed the ties and the blindfold and told me I was like his son and that I had to confess and not hide anything from him. He told me it was a sin to lie and that God would put those who lie in hell. He then took me into what looked like a cafeteria and another interrogator started to question me.
The second interrogator told me he felt sorry for me because I was too young to be arrested and told me he would release me if I told him who the boys who throw stones are. He then showed me photographs of boys from the camp and asked me whether I knew them. When I told him I didn’t know any of them he became angry and accused me of lying. He yelled and swore at me and called me a bitch son of a bitch.
I was then taken to another place where a policeman accused me of throwing stones at soldiers. The interrogators did not inform me of my rights. One of the interrogators showed me a photograph and told me the person in it was me while I was throwing stones at soldiers. I told him this was not true. He questioned me for about 15 minutes and then called a lawyer and told him to come to the police station with my father.
He then printed out my statement in Hebrew and asked me to sign it but I refused to sign it because it was in Hebrew which is a language I don’t understand. He then took my photograph and my fingerprints and then made me wait outside in the corridor.
I waited in the corridor until around 7:00 p.m. when my father and the lawyer arrived. The interrogator told my father and the lawyer he was going to release me and that if I get arrested again he would lock me up in prison. I then went home with my father. We arrived home at around 8:00 p.m.