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Testimony: I.I.M.I.


Name: I.I.M.I.
Age: 15
Date: 29 December 2019
Location: Al' Arrub, West Bank
Accusation: Throwing stones

On 29 December 2019, a 15-year-old minor from Al’Arrub refugee camp was arrested by Israeli soldiers at 6:00 p.m. He reports being given a document about his rights prior to interrogation but not consulting with a lawyer first.

Israeli soldiers stopped my uncle who was driving on the main road and checked his identity card. It was around 6:00 p.m. Then they told him they were looking for me. My uncle phoned me and I went to see what they wanted. 
The soldiers kept me and my uncle on the side of the road for about two hours. Then a soldier told me they had photographic evidence of me throwing stones. I denied the accusation.
Then a soldier tied my hands behind my back with a single plastic tie which was very tight and painful. Then he blindfolded me and took me to the back of a military vehicle and made me sit on the metal floor. 
The soldiers inside the vehicle kicked and slapped me the whole way. They stepped on my fingers and slapped me on the face and swore at me calling me “a son of a whore”.  I was taken to the police station in the settlement of Bitar Illit. At the settlement I waited in an open area for about 30 minutes before being taken inside for interrogation. 
The interrogator wore civilian clothes and had a camera and a voice recorder in the room. He warned me any wrong move by me and he would “send me to the hospital.” I understood this to mean that he would beat me severely. Then he gave me a document about my right to silence which also said he was not allowed to beat me. It also said I had the right to consult with a lawyer. The interrogator made me sign it although I did not consult with a lawyer. 
Then he showed me a photo of clashes with soldiers and pointed to a boy who was throwing stones and told me it was me. When I denied the allegation he started to shout and told me if I gave him troubles he was going to beat me. He interrogated me for about an hour and I continued to deny the accusation. Then he showed me documents written in Hebrew and asked me to sign them and I did.
After the interrogation I was taken to the police station in Etzion settlement where I was searched in my boxer shorts and taken to a cell where I spent the night. 
The following day, at around noon, I was shackled and taken to Ofer prison where I was left in a small room by myself. The room did not have any windows or lights and was about 1.5 metres by 1.5 metres. The room was cold and empty apart from a stone bench. I was left there for about nine hours. During this time I was allowed to go to the toilet once while tied and shackled. Then I was strip searched and asked to crouch up and down while naked. Then I was taken to Section 13.
The following day I was taken to Ofer military court. My parents were not in court because they were not informed of the hearing. The hearing was adjourned. 
In all I had about five military court hearings. At the last hearing, which was on 22 January 2020, I was sentenced in a plea bargain to 31 days in prison and fined NIS 1,000. I was also given a suspended sentence of 14 days suspended for five years. I accepted the plea bargain because I would be released the following day. 
I was released on 23 January 2020 and I went home with my family. We arrived home in the evening.
 This testimony was produced with the financial support of the German Federal Foreign Office. Its contents are the sole responsibility of Military Court Watch.