Oppressing West Bank Palestinian Children - by Stephen Lendman
The Al-Zaytouna Centre for Studies and Consultations is a Beirut, Lebanon-based organization engaged in "strategic and futuristic studies on the Arab and Muslim worlds, (highlighting) the Palestinian issue."
In spring 2010, it published a Britain-Palestine All Party Parliamentary Group (BPAPPG) study, including the widespread detention of Palestinian children titled, "Under Occupation: A Report on the West Bank," discussed below.
Under military occupation, Palestinian children are treated like adults. Each year, about 700 are arrested, brutally interrogated, and prosecuted in military courts, denying them justice.
Since 2000 alone, over 7,000 have been brutalized. On January 31, 2011, 222 Palestinian children were imprisoned, 34 aged 12 - 15. Some at times are 10 or younger. At age 16, they're considered adults in violation of international law.
Israel, in fact, brazenly repudiates children's rights and welfare, treating them like adults, in violation of the UN Declaration of the Rights of the Child, its Principle 1 saying:
"Every child, without exception whatsoever, shall be entitled to (fundamental human and civil) rights, without distinction or discrimination on account of race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, whether of himself or of his family."
They're entitled to special protections and opportunities to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually, and socially in a healthy normal way under conditions of freedom and dignity - including their right to life, an adequate standard of living, healthcare, education, leisure, safety and peace, what Israel denied them for over four decades.
Instead, they're taken to military detention centers, harshly interrogated for days without access to lawyers or family members. In fact, parents and siblings rarely know where they're held or whether they're alive or dead.
Moreover, they're mistreated, beaten, terrorized, usually tortured, hooded, denied food and water for prolonged periods as well as access to toilets and washing facilities, exposed to extreme heat and cold, painfully shackled, and deprived of sleep for several days, often in the shabeh position.
It consists of hands and legs bound to a small chair, at times from behind to a pipe affixed to the wall, painfully slanted forward, hooded with a filthy sack, and played loud music nonstop through loudspeakers.
NGOs like the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel, Adalah and DCI-Palestine report widespread abuse. In 2009, a sample of 100 sworn affidavits revealed:
-- 69% of them were beaten, kicked, slapped, or otherwise abused;
-- 49% were threatened;
-- 14% held in solitary confinement;
-- 12% threatened with sexual assault, including rape; and