Military Court Watch – Newsletter January 2018

Feb 7, 2018No Comments »

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Web: | Twitter: @MCourtWatch

Newsletter – January 2018

Detention figures

According to the Israeli Prison Service (IPS), as of 30 November 2017 there were 5,881 Palestinians (West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza) held as “security prisoners” in Israeli detention facilities including 313 children (12-17 years). In the case of children there was a 2 per cent decrease in the number compared with the previous month and an annual decrease of 17 per cent compared with 2016. These figures also include 2 children held in administrative detention. According to the IPS, 51 per cent of child detainees and 84 per cent of adults were transferred and/or detained inside Israel in violation of Article 76 of the Fourth Geneva Convention during the month.
More statistics >> 

A child’s testimony

On 21 October 2017, a 16-year-old youth from Tuqu was arrested by Israeli soldiers at 2:30 a.m. and accused of throwing stones. He reports that he was not informed of his right to silence or his right to consult with a lawyer prior to interrogation. “I was up late studying when I heard a commotion outside the house. It was around 2:30 a.m. Then I heard loud banging at the front door. My father answered and four Israeli soldiers entered our home while dozens more surrounded the house. The soldiers were accompanied by my uncle who showed them the way. A soldier asked for my father’s identity card and looked at the annex where his children are listed.” 

20 percent of UK parliament sign motion on child detention

129 MPs have signed the following motion: “That this House notes with concern that hundreds of Palestinian children continue to be arrested, detained and tried in Israeli military courts, despite the practice involving widespread and systematic violations of international law and being widely condemned; further notes that allegations of ill-treatment at the hands of Israeli authorities include blindfolding, physical violence and arrest at night; notes the disparity between the treatment of Israeli and Palestinian children by Israeli authorities and calls for those authorities to treat Palestinian children in a way that is not inferior to the way they would any Israeli child.” 

Third anniversary of ICC prosecutor initiating a preliminary investigation into Palestine

This month marked the third anniversary since the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (OTP) announced the opening of a preliminary examination into the situation in Palestine following its accession to the Rome Statute on 2 January 2015. The purpose of a preliminary examination is to establish whether the criteria for opening a formal investigation are met. Specifically, the Prosecutor considers jurisdiction, admissibility and the interests of justice in making this determination. In December 2017, the OTP issued its annual report.

NGO Monitor found leafleting at the military courts without authorisation

An unusual event took place in the Ofer military court in the West Bank last Wednesday. Immediately after military judge Maj. Haim Balilty read out his decision – ruling that 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi must remain in detention until the end of court proceedings against her – someone started distributing leaflets in English in support of the decision. That someone was none other than Lt. Col. (res.) Maurice Hirsch, who until November 2016 headed the military prosecution in Judea and Samaria, and prepared its indictments against thousands of Palestinians. The leaflet mostly contained Hirsch’s statement about Tamimi.

New report by Breaking the Silence: “Why I broke the silence”

“The company commander finds the kid, he’s in bed. The moment he sees us he gets up, tries to escape through the window, and is caught. Within a few seconds, zip ties, he’s handcuffed, blindfolded while still in the house, in front of his mother … While we’re outside, his mother is standing in the entrance to the house, hitting herself, crying, crying, crying, and then she runs up to me, kneels down, hugs my leg and mumbles in Hebrew/Arabic ‘please, please,’ all sorts of words. I don’t know what she said in Arabic. She pleaded. Her son is blindfolded, standing, I’m holding him, he hears her. And I didn’t do anything. I stood there and ignored her. I completely froze.”

Source: Military Court Watch, Newsletter, Jan. 2018 >>

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