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Video show Israeli troops questioning underage Palestinians

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An Israeli soldier takes a photo from a Palestinian minor in Jaber neighborhood of al-Khalil (Hebron) on May 24, 2016, after questioning him about an earlier stone-throwing incident in the neighborhood

A leading Israeli rights group has denounced the Israeli military for illegally questioning a group of underage Palestinians, calling it a “blatant disregard” for the rights of minors.

A video provided by B’Tselem shows several dozen Israeli forces randomly gathering around 20 Palestinian children and teens from the streets and questioning them.

The Palestinians are forced to stand against a wall and answer questions about a stone-throwing incident, which had allegedly occurred last week.

The soldiers then take photo of every child and teen, using a cell phone, after making them sit in front of the wall before releasing them.

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In a statement, B’Tselem said the scope of the latest incident and the fact that every minor was photographed was unusual.

To date, such incidents occurred within homes, with the children’s parents present, and without the minors themselves being questioned or accused of a specific offense, the rights group said.

According to B’Tselem, none of the 14 minors whose details were obtained by the rights group, had a record of being nabbed or questioned by the Israeli military.

The incident indicated that they were arrested and photographed “despite being suspected of nothing,” it said.

The statement said the “goal was primarily to intimidate the children in order to deter them from throwing stones, and to make it easier for the military to identify them in case they do.”

“This demonstrates blatant disregard for the military’s duty to protect the rights of minors.”

The Israeli military, it added, is banned from treating civilians, particularly underage ones, as potential criminals and using soldiers to deter them.

The whole incident was filmed by a B’Tselem volunteer living in the neighborhood. The rights group also obtained several of the minors’ accounts of the event.

In late May, the Palestinian Ministry of Information said nearly 2,080 Palestinian children have been killed and approximately 13,000 injured by the Israeli military over the past 16 years.

About 12,000 Palestinian children have been arrested, and 420 are currently being held in Israeli prisons, it added.

On Sunday, Israeli forces also arrested 13 Palestinians after storming their houses in the occupied West Bank.

(Source / 05.06.2016)

Tags: #ICC4Israel

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The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said. The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled. Meanwhile, renewed clashes erupted between protesters and Israeli security forces near the Lion's Gate in the Old City, where police used stun grenades against the demonstrators. A regular dynamic has developed involving clashes between Palestinians and Israel Police over the past several days near the Lion's Gate. Dozens of Palestinians are present at the site on a regular basis, urging devotion to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount and condemning Israel. During Muslim prayer times, particularly the midday and nighttime prayers, hundreds and sometimes even thousands have been gathering there.

There have been outbreaks of violence during these periods, including stone-throwing or physical confrontations with the police. In most of these incidents, the police have been using stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets to disperse the crowds. In a number of cases, journalists in the area have also suffered violence at the hands of the police. On Tuesday, Hassan Shaalan, a reporter for the Ynet news website, was struck by a policeman even after he identified himself as a member of the press. A group of Jerusalem-based journalists released a statement of condemnation over the incident and called on the police to permit reporters to do their jobs. The Jerusalem Police responded: "This involved an incident that took place in the course of violent disturbances of the peace that occurred in Jerusalem while the police were acting to remove the demonstrators from the street after some of them refused to vacate. The forces working on the scene are under constant threat to their lives. http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.802141

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