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Israeli forces detain 17 Palestinians, including 10 high school students in Jerusalem

Oct. 17, 2016 3:18 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 18, 2016 11:42 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces detained 17 Palestinians in raids across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem overnight and during the day Monday, including 10 teenagers at a high school in Jerusalem’s Old City whom Israeli police accused of throwing rocks.

Israeli forces raided the Dar al-Aytam school in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem, and first detained Samir Jibril, the director of the Palestinian Ministry of Education department, which oversees all Palestinian schools in occupied East Jerusalem.

The organization's public relations officer Sawsan al-Safadi told Ma'an that Israeli forces stormed the school, which also serves as an orphanage, and took Jibril to the Qishla police center near the Old City's Jaffa Gate. He was released several hours later after being interrogated.

She highlighted that it wasn't the first time Israeli soldiers detain Jibril, saying that Israeli forces raided the school "several times" last week and detained him.

Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samri said in a statement later on Monday that Israeli police also detained 10 students from the school, all between 15 and 17 years old, for “deliberately throwing rocks at the street endangering public safety of locals, tourists, and security forces that travel by (al-Wad) street every day.”

Locals told Ma'an they were detained as they left school and were chased by Israeli forces through the alleys of the Old City.

They were identified by local sources later Monday evening as Abd al-Rahman Abu Najib,15, Munjid Hassan Abu Hadwan,15, Abd al-Malik Musa Ghazali,17, Yusif Yakub al-Rishiq,16, Munthir Amir al-Tamimi,15, Khadir Fadhil Ajluni,17, Ahmad Ashraf Sharabati,16, Mustafa Salah al-Din Balbisi,17, Amir Basim Nufal,17, and Faris Ashraf al-Razim,16. 

Al-Samri noted in her statement that the students had participated in “other rock-throwing events that happened during the last couple of weeks.”

During a raid by Israeli forces into the school last week over alleged rock throwing, Jibril had told Ma’an that the Israeli soldiers’ accusations of rock throwing were “bogus” due to the fact that there were “security bars” secured over all the school’s windows, making it nearly impossible for students to throw anything out of them.

Meanwhile, al- Samri added in her statement that school principal Muhammad al-Atrash had also been summoned for interrogation and that that he would be released after the interrogation was completed.

Ma’an reported last week after the raid that al-Atrash had already been detained, released, and then banned from the Old City for 45 days.

Separately, the Palestinian Prisoner's Society (PPS) said in a statement on Monday that Israeli forces also raided several areas of the occupied West Bank, including the town of Surif in the southern district of Hebron, where two people were detained.

The statement identified the two as Ahmad Ibrahim Ghneimat and Abdullah Muhammad Ghneimat.

Also in the southern West Bank, Israeli forces raided the Aida refugee camp in the Bethlehem district, where they detained Khalil Moussa Zreina.

Two Palestinians were detained from the northern West Bank district of Nablus. PPS identified the detainees as Hazza Asaad Lulah from Awarta village, and Labib Jabir al-Hajj Muhammad from the village of Talfit.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed a total of five detentions to Ma'an, citing three from Surif, one from Talfit, and one from Awarta.

According to Ma’an documentation, some 118 Palestinians were detained under various circumstances, predominantly during overnight detention raids, in the first 10 days of October alone.
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