Israel is the only country in the world which arraigns kids before military courts denying them family access and legal representation.
Masked Israeli soldiers burst into children’s bedrooms in the early hours of the morning abusing their parents and siblings and drag their screaming stone throwing suspects, some as young as 10, out of their beds and into military custody.
Ninety-five per cent of imprisoned children have been subjected to brutality during their arrest and interrogation.
Children are told that unless they furnish the names of stone throwers their families will be attacked and their homes could be bulldozed.
Last year 14 Palestinian boys and girls were shot dead by the Israeli military in the West Bank and Gaza Strip which was 21 fewer than in 2016, the deadliest year for Palestinian children. Currently there are 400 children locked up in Megiddo and Ofer prisons.
On 20/6/2016, 20 members of the US Congress signed a letter to President Barack Obama urging the appointment of a Special Envoy for Palestinian Children because of concern for young Palestinian children living ‘under the constant fear of arrest, detention, and violence at the hands of the Israeli military’, and declares ‘[t]he situation on the ground is rapidly deteriorating and we must act now’.
‘ignoring the trauma being inflicted on millions of Palestinian children undermines our American values and will ensure the perpetuation of a conflict and occupation we all want to see end peacefully.’
Byron Friends of Palestine urge the federal government and opposition to condemn the abuse and murder of Palestinian children which violate all international and humanitarian laws to which Australia is signatory.
Gareth W R Smith, Palestine Liberation Centre