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Home » Children »

Testimony: Y.I.J.

 Name:  Y.I.J.
 Age:  15
 Date of incident:  7 April 2015
 Location:  Al Arrub, West Bank
 Accusation:  Throwing stones/Molotovs

On 7 April 2015, a 15-year-old minor from Al 'Arrub refugee camp was arrested by Israeli soldiers from home at 2.30 a.m. He reports ill treatment and being denied his basic legal rights under Israeli military law. He reports being released on NIS 1,000 bail 7 days after his arrest. 

I heard the sound of people outside our home which was soon followed by loud banging at our front door. It was 2.30 a.m. My father rushed to open the door because he didn’t want the door broken down. Israeli soldiers then entered our home and immediately asked for everyone’s ID cards. When they saw my ID card a soldier told my father they were arresting me.
One of the soldiers then told me to get dressed. My hands were then tied in front of me with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and one connecting the two. The ties were painful. I was then led out of our house. My father was given a document about my arrest. The soldiers led me towards Route 60 – the main road. On the way one of the soldiers beat me with his gun on my back. We then walked up a nearby hill for about 15 minutes before arriving at some military vehicles. I was put in the back of one of the vehicles and made to sit on the metal floor.
The jeep drove to the nearby settlement of Karmi Zur. On the way I was blindfolded. On arrival I waited by the jeep for about 15 minutes before being taken to see a doctor. The doctor examined me and gave me a form to fill out. I was then taken back to the jeep where I remained for about 30 minutes before the jeep drove to the police station in the settlement of Etzion. At Etzion I was put in a room and waited from about 3.30 a.m. until around 9.00 a.m. when I was interrogated.
The interrogator wore civilian clothes. He did not inform me of any rights. I remained tied throughout the interrogation. My blindfold was removed and replaced around three times during the interrogation. He called my father and told him to appoint a lawyer for me. He told him I was being held at Etzion. The interrogator accused me of throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at soldiers. I told him this was not true. He then slapped me and swore at me. He called me a "fucker" and called my mother a "whore". He also punched me in the chest. He told me there were confessions against me. When I asked him to tell me who gave the confessions he refused to give me names. The interrogation lasted for about 15 minutes. I was taken out of the interrogation room for about 15 minutes and then a second interrogator took me to another room.
The second interrogator removed my blindfold. Before the second interrogation started the new interrogator gave me a form printed in Arabic and Hebrew. The document was long and was taken away from me before I could read it all. I remember it said I had the right to a lawyer. The interrogator then asked me to sign the form as proof that I read it. He then started to interrogate me. The second interrogator made the same allegations which I again denied. At the end of the interrogation he printed out a document in Hebrew and asked me to sign it. I signed without understanding what it said because I thought this is the way things are done. The second interrogation lasted about 30 minutes.
I was then photographed and fingerprinted and taken to a cell in Etzion where I remained until around 4.00 p.m. I was then shackled and handcuffed and taken in a vehicle and driven to Ofer prison, near Jerusalem. On arrival at Ofer I was strip searched. The soldier asked my to crouch up and down while naked. One soldier was present and I felt embarrassed and humiliated. I was then taken to Section 13.
The following day I was taken to Ofer military court. My parents did not attend because they were not notified. A lawyer was in the military court to represent me. The hearing was adjourned until Tuesday, 14 April 2015. On Monday, 13 April 2015, at around 10.00 p.m., a soldier came to tell me I was going to be released. I got out of prison at around 11.00 p.m. My parents were waiting for me outside prison. They told me that my lawyer was able to release me on bail. My parents had to pay NIS 1,000 bail.