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Degrading treatment of an arrested 16 year old boy in Hebron

14 July 2009

On Monday the 13th of July around 4:30 pm Jamil (age 16) was stopped by four soldiers of the Israeli Occupation Forces approximately 150 meter from his house. The soldiers commanded him to show his identity papers and confirmed that everything was in order, but still refused to let him go. Jamil believes that his detention was the result of his family’s activities with B’tselem. After 15 minutes, Jamil’s mother and cousin came to see what was happening to him. When he explained his mistreatment, one of the soldiers told him, that he should ‘shut up’ or they would ‘fuck him’. In the same degrading manner, they prevented the mother from asking for the reason of her son’s detention.

After some time the soldiers took Jamil away without explaining where he was being taken. His intuition led him to the conclusion that it was into the direction of the military camp of Tel Rumeida. In order to further degrade him, they took through the settlement of Ramaryashai, even though they could have chosen the direct route around it. The soldiers pushed and kicked Jamil while forcing him to walk really slow through the settlement. Meanwhile, the settlers threw stones, tomatoes and eggs at him. Several also attacked him from behind. Jamil remembers a big group of settlers – kids, men and women – attacking him while the soldiers didn’t even try to stop them.

By this time,the mother had informed the whole family and some neighbors came to film the situation. The soldiers reacted by placing themselves between the two groups of people and making it difficult to see and to tape what happened to Jamil. Then some soldiers who just had come down from the military camp began blindfolding Jamil and placed him in handcuffs. Though he was bound and blindfolded, the soldiers continued to kick and beat him with a hard object that Jamil believed to be a rifle butt.

After some time the captain of the Tel Rumeida military outpost came down and ordered the soldiers to pull back so that the people with cameras were able to film him while he scolded the soldiers about what they had been doing. He then announced, that Jamil didn’t do anything wrong and his ID was in order; so there has been no reason to punish him.

Next, the commander turned around to Jamil and said really low that he better not tell about this incident or he would kill him. After his warning, he allowed his relatives to help Jamil walk back to his house, as he could not do so on his own. Jamil finally arrived home around 6:45 pm.

Back home the father was calling the police, but only one police man showed up to tell them, that they have to come to the police station to make a formal complaint. They decided first to go to the hospital to take care of Jamil’s injuries. Around 10 pm they arrived at the Kiryat Arba police station and there they were told that there was not enough police present to deal with the complain and that they should come again the next day at 9 am.

When they returned the next day they had to wait outside the police station for three hours. When a police man was available he barely assisted other than taking down the story. He didn’t even bother to ask if Jamil could identify the soldiers or settlers who attacked him. The police received the full hospital report and the video tapes.

After members of the ISM met with Jamil he told them that he is now afraid to leave his housebe cause of the threat from the captain of the IOF. He is in a lot of pain and can barely walk because of the injuries. He also said that he doesn’t believe that this incident will bring any consequences for the soldiers or the settlers. Lastly he said this is only one instance of hardship at the expense of the soldiers who had detained him 3 times in the two days before the incident.