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Israel Detains Palestinian Teen With Coronavirus For Three Weeks Without Questioning

PLEASE: Media , religious leaders, political leaders (never mind that an election is imminent, this is more important than party politics) , labour leaders..all New Zealanders who care about children..join the demand that : The Israeli government must immediately release all Palestinian child detainees .

Please let's stop looking the other way.

Background information:

The treatment of Palestinian children has been a concern of humanitarians for some time. In 2015, AFSC (American Friends Service Committee) and DCIP (Defence for Children International -Palestine) launched their No Way to Treat a Child campaign, with the purpose of exposing the systematic abuse of Palestinian children in Israeli military detention.

Carefully documented details of their findings can be found on DCIP's website.

Israel detains between 500 and 700 Palestinian children each year, accusing them of throwing rocks. In half of the cases, children are taken away, blindfolded, with hands tied, in the middle of the night. The parents don't know where the children are taken.Three out of four of the children experience physical violence after being arrested. The children, frightened and alone, sign documents in Hebrew which they can't read. They are then told that they have confessed. The children are tried in military courts. The conviction rate is close to 100%. Israel is the only country in the world where children are tried by military courts.

The silence of the West has given Israel the green light to abuse Palestinian children.

The situation was horrific enough before the appearance in the world of

COVID-19.

When it was reported that COVID-19 had appeared in Israeli prisons, activists feared that inevitably chldren would be infected.

DCIP pleaded with the Israeli government to release all Palestinian child detainees amid the COVID-19 crisis.

“Israeli authorities must take immediate action to release all Palestinian child detainees in Israeli prisons and detention centers due to the increasing vulnerability created due to the rapid global spread of the COVID-19 virus and to safeguard their right to life, survival, development, and health in accordance with international law.”

UNICEF's Executive Director Henrietta Fore stated, “Children in detention are at heightened risk of contracting COVID-19 and should be released.”

Now it's happened.

On 06 August , the DCIP was able to confirm the first known case of a Palestinian child detained by IDF, has testing positive for COVID-19.

The same case, written by Hagar Shezaf, was published on 14 August in Haaretz.com/middle-east-news/palestinians

Israeli forces detained a 15-year-old Palestinian boy around 4 am on July 23 from his home in a refugee camp located north of the West Bank city of Ramallah.

He was transferred to a prison, inside Israel for interrogation. After he tested positive for COVID-19, Israeli authorities extended his detention for another eight days. The latest information collected DCIP, is that the boy is yet to be interrogated.

“There is no way Israeli forces can justify the detention of a child currently infected with COVID-19,” said DCIP. “By extending this boy’s custodial detention, Israeli authorities are recklessly endangering his health and well-being along with the health of other detainees. Israeli authorities must release all Palestinian child detainees immediately.”

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