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Testimony: M.M.M.A.


Name: M.M.M.A.
Age: 16
Date: 9 August 2017
Location: Tuqu', West Bank
Accusation: Throwing stones

On 9 August 2017 a 16-year-old youth from Tuqu' is arrested by Israeli soldiers at 1:30 a.m. and accused of throwing stones. He reports only being informed of his right to silence and right to consult with a lawyer at the end of the interrogation. 

I was looking at Facebook reports about Israeli military activities in my village. It was around 1:30 a.m. and I could not sleep. I looked out the window and saw a group of soldiers in the neighbourhood. Then I saw the soldiers knock at my uncle’s house nearby. Then I heard a knock at our door.
My father answered the door and three soldiers entered our home and immediately asked my father to name all his children. Then they came to my bedroom and asked me for my name and then told me I was under arrest. They gave my father a document with details in Hebrew about my arrest. They asked my father to sign it and he did.
I put on some clothes and said goodbye to my family. The soldiers then took me outside where they tied my hands to the front with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and another connecting the two. The ties were not painful. They also blindfolded me.
I was then pushed into the back of a military jeep and made me sit on the metal floor. A soldier made fun of me and deliberately spilled water on my leg. Another soldier swore at me and called me son of a "whore" and hit me on my head but the commander told him to stop.
The jeep drove a short distance to a nearby military base where a doctor examined me. He removed the blindfold and put it back on when he was finished. Then I was taken to another military base where they made me sit on a chair in an outdoor area for about four hours. They brought me some water and I was tied and blindfolded the whole time.
Then I was taken in a troop carrier to the police station in Etzion settlement. At Etzion the authorities refused to admit me and I was taken to a prison cell where the ties and the blindfold were removed and I slept to pass the time. At around 9:00 a.m I was taken for interrogation.
The interrogator, who wore civilian clothes, did not inform me of my rights. He told me he was an intelligence officer and that he knew everything there was to know about me and told me to tell him everything. Then he asked me how many times have I thrown stones at soldiers. When I denied the accusation and refused to confess he punched me in the stomach. He swore at me and called me son of a "whore".
Then he showed me a picture of me standing on the side of a road not doing anything. However I denied it was me because I thought he would still use it as evidence against me. Then he asked me for the names of my friends but I did not give him any names. This lasted for about an hour. Then he told me he was not going to release me until I confessed. Then I confessed to throwing one stone which missed because I wanted to put an end to this.
After I confessed the intelligence officer took me to another room where another interrogator was sitting. He asked me where I was when I threw stones and wanted to know more details about what happened at the time when a young person from my village was killed.
In the end the second interrogator handed me a document informing me of my right to silence and my right to consult with a lawyer. Then he phoned a lawyer but the lawyer did not answer. Then I asked him to call another lawyer and he did. The lawyer told me not to confess but I told him I already had. I remember the interrogator had a tape recorder in the room.
The second interrogator printed out a document in Hebrew and asked me to sign it and I did without understanding what it said. Then they took my photograph and fingerprints before taking me to a cell in Etzion.  I was searched in my underwear and left in the cell for about two hours. After two hours I was taken to Ofer prison where I was strip searched and taken to Section 13.
The following day I was taken to Ofer military court. My parents were not in court and my case was adjourned. I had five military court appearances. At the last hearing I was sentenced in a plea bargain to two months in prison and fined 2,000 shekels. I was also given a suspended sentence of six months valid for three years.
I spent my prison sentence at Ofer. In prison I did not study. My family visited me one day before I was released. I was released on 2 October 2017.