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Testimony: I.A.I.Z.


Name: I.A.I.Z.
Age: 14
Date: 5 September 2018
Location: Qalandia, West Bank
Accusation: Throwing stones

On 5 September 2018, a 14-year-old boy from Qalandiya refugee camp is arrested by Israeli soldiers at 3:00 p.m. during clashes. He reports being interrogated at midnight without consulting with a lawyer or being informed of his right to silence. 

I was in the area near Qalandiya checkpoint at around 3:00 p.m. when boys were throwing stones at Israeli soldiers and swearing at them. Then I went to a nearby shop when all of a sudden I was grabbed by the neck by the person who was standing next to me. It turned out he was a soldier in civilian clothes.
The soldier dragged me to a small room at the checkpoint and left me there on a chair. About an hour later my mother came and both of us waited in the room until around 10:00 p.m. when we were taken to Atarot police station. 
We were taken the short distance from the checkpont to the police station in a military vehicle. We both sat on seats in the back. On the way the soldier who was driving told me not to lie to the interrogator because he knows everything. When we arrived at the police station we were left in an outdoor area until around midnight when I was taken for interrogation and my mother was allowed to accompany me.
The interrogator was dressed in civilian clothes. He told my mother he was going to allow her to attend the interrogation but warned her she was not allowed to say a word or intervene in any way. He threatened to throw her out if she opened her mouth. He told her she could listen but she could not speak.
Then the interrogator told me and my mother we had the right to have a lawyer present. My mother told him she did not have a telephone number for a lawyer and that it was a late hour at night to find a lawyer anyway. The interrogator told her in that case he was going to interrogate me without a lawyer present. Then he started to question me without informing me of my right to silence.
The interrogator asked me what I was doing at the checkpoint. I told him I was with my friends. He asked whether my friends and I were throwing stones at soldiers and I told him we were. Then he asked whether there were soldiers at the checkpoint and I said yes. Then he wanted to know how many and whether there were female soldiers. Then he accused me of swearing at the female soldier and insulting her. Then he asked whether the stones had hit soldiers and I said no. He accused me of lying and thumped the table aggressively. I was scared and started to cry. Then he shouted at me again and wanted to know why I was crying. 
Then he repeated the accusation. He told me I called the female soldier a whore. He also told me soldiers saw me throwing stones. Then he asked me what would happen if I am hit on the head by a stone. He wanted to know whether it is possible I would bleed and be hurt. I said yes. Then he also accused me of throwing stones at the CCTV camera and said all the money of my country would not be enough to compensate for the broken camera. I was shivering as he spoke to me  because the air conditioner was blowing cold air and I was tired and scared. 
Then he showed my mother documents in Hebrew and asked her to sign. When she asked him to translate he told her the document said she was allowed to attend the interrogation. My mother signed the documents.  The interrogation lasted for about 2 hours and I was very tired, hungry and sleepy towards the end.
Then they took my photograph and fingerprints and then took me and my mother to another room where we waited for another 2 hours. I was shackled and handcuffed to the back. The handcuffs were painful and my mother asked the soldier to remove them but he told her he was not allowed to remove them. 
I recall a man and woman in military uniform where in the room and they were flirting and kissing and I did not feel comfortable. My mother thought it was disgusting behavior. They were smoking and blowing smoke in our direction. 
Then a commander came and told the soldiers to take my mother to the checkpoint. He told her she could attend my military court hearing later that morning. Then I was taken in a vehicle to Ofer prison. I arrived at Ofer at around 4:30 a.m. At Ofer I was strip searched and taken to Section 13. I ate and slept maybe for an hour. At around 7:00 a.m. I was taken to Ofer military court.
My mother was in court and my lawyer. I was taken to court in shackles but the handcuffs were removed. I did not understand much but I was later told by my lawyer I was going to be released. He told me he was able to negotiate a deal with the prosecutor where my family would pay a 2,000 shekels fine . He told me if I am seen at the checkpoint again I would spend 3 weeks in prison. My mother accepted the deal. 
I was released on 6 September 2018 and I went home with my cousin. I arrived home just after midnight. My mother had prepared a nice meal and I ate and went to bed. I was exhausted.