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Woman filmed by soldiers describes torture, humiliation

Oct. 7, 2010 10:33 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 11, 2010 7:31 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- The Palestinian woman who was filmed, handcuffed and blindfolded as an Israeli soldier danced around her said Thursday that the video only showed the beginning of "a journey of torture and humiliation."

A video of 24-year-old Ihsan Dababisa surfaced on YouTube on Monday, and was aired on Israel's Channel 10 News. Dababisa spoke to Ma'an's correspondent in her home in Nuba village, west of Hebron, and described the ordeal which followed her detention.

Dababisa said she was detained at Etzion checkpoint at 8 a.m. on 11 December 2007, and thrown into a military jeep, handcuffed and blindfolded. She was taken to the yard of Etzion detention center in front of a group of soldiers.

Moments later, she said, she heard loud music and one of the soldiers tried to touch her. She tried to stay close to the wall, and another soldier arrived with a bottle of wine, and offered her a drink. When she refused, but he continued to harass her, she said.

The soldiers then attacked her "like vicious dogs."

"They began beating me with rifle butts and legs. One of the soldiers hit my head against the metal of the military jeep until I fainted. Then I found myself in front of a female doctor wearing military uniform. After examining me they moved me to the interrogation center where my journey of torture and humiliation started.

"The officer’s name who began to interrogate me was Beran. He threatened to demolish my family home and arrest my siblings, the interrogation lasted for two hours. After that I was transferred with my eyes blindfolded to another interrogation center, I think it was the Russian compound, where there were three interrogators.

"Soon after I came in they began insulting and cursing using words I do not want to say. One of the interrogators was pulling me from my hair. I was handcuffed the whole time. The interrogation lasted until 11 at night, then they transferred me to Hasharon prison where they accused me of trying to stab someone, and of affiliation with the Islamic Jihad. Lawyers from the prisoners' society defended me and I was sentenced to 22 months in prison. I was released on 6 September 2009."

More than a year after she was released, Dababisa saw herself on the news. "They were talking about me, I could not believe what I was seeing with my eyes. I was about to faint, I began to cry, I could not sleep all night for one moment. All of the memories while I was among a group of criminal sadist corrupted soldiers who were without feelings and humanity came to my head."

Dababisa said she would not be relieved "until the soldiers are punished in court as an example to anyone who would dare to humiliate or insult any Palestinian prisoner."

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