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Testimony: I.S.A.


Name: I.S.A.
Age: 16
Date of incident: 4 March 2015
Location: Al 'Arrub, West Bank
Accusation: Throwing stones
On 4 March 2015, a 16-year-old youth from the Al Arrub refugee camp is arrested by Israeli soldiers at 4:00 a.m. and accused of throwing stones. He is released four days later.
My father woke me up and told me that Israeli soldiers had come to the house to arrest me. It was 4:00 a.m. He told me they wanted to take me to Etzion for interrogation because I was accused of throwing stones at soldiers. The soldiers gave my father a document with details about me arrest. They told me to get dressed and immediately took me outside the house where they tied my hands to the front with three plastic ties: one on each wrist and one connecting the two. The ties were not painful.
The soldiers walked me for about 15 minutes through the hills towards the main road. I was then made to stand near some military jeeps in the area. Then they blindfolded me and put me into the back of a jeep where I sat on the floor.
The jeep drove for about 15 minutes towards the settlement of Karmi Zur. At Karmi Zur I was taken to see a doctor who examined me and gave me a form to fill out. I was then taken to a room where I sat on the floor for about two hours. The soldiers then took me back of a jeep where I sat on the floor. The jeep drove for about 30 minutes before it stopped at Etzion police station.
At Etzion I was taken to a room where I sat on the floor for about an hour. A soldier then ordered me to stand facing the wall with my hands up. I remained in this position for about an hour. I was in pain. Whenever I tried to rest my arms a soldier would shout at me and order me to put them up again. I was then taken to the interrogation room.
The interrogator introduced himself as Dudu. He did not inform me of my right to silence. He removed the blindfold but kept the ties. Before starting to interrogate me he asked me for my father’s number because he wanted to give him the number of a lawyer. My father didn’t answer so the interrogator called the lawyer himself. The interrogator allowed me to speak to the lawyer who told me not to be scared and that he would see me in court.
The interrogator accused me of throwing stones. I told him this was not true. He accused me of lying and told me there were confessions against me. Then he swore at me and called me a fucker son of a whore. Then he took me outside where I waited for an hour before another interrogator took me for a second round of interrogation.
The second interrogator was in civilian clothes. He did not inform me of my right to silence or of my right to consult with a lawyer. He accused me of throwing stones at soldiers and showed me a picture of myself in a demonstration. I denied that the picture was of me. The interrogation lasted for about 15 minutes. Then I was taken into a courtyard where I waited for about 15 minutes before a third interrogator took back into the interrogation room.
This interrogation wore a police uniform. He left the room and came back with a boy from the camp who he claimed had testified against me. The boy said in front of the interrogator that the two of us were throwing stones together. I told the boy he was a liar. The interrogator told me I had to confess because confessing would help me in court. Otherwise I was going to have a high sentence. I told him I had nothing to confess to.
The interrogator printed out my statement in Hebrew and translated it for me. I signed it because it was identical to what I had told him. I was then photographed and fingerprinted and taken to a prison cell where I remained until around 8:00 p.m. Soldiers then shackled and handcuffed me and I was driven to Ofer prison.
At Ofer I was strip searched and given prison uniform and taken to Section 13. Four days later I was taken to the military court. A lawyer was in court and he managed to get me released for lack of evidence. My parents had to pay a 1,000 NIS fine. I was released on the same day.