BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces and settlers detained two Palestinians teens at gunpoint on Sunday near an illegal Israeli settlement east of Qalqiliya in the northern occupied West Bank, according to reports from Israeli media, which alleged that the two Palestinians approached the settlement intending to carry out an attack.
shared by Palestinian outlet Shehab News Agency showed at least two Israeli settlers holding the Palestinian girl and boy at gunpoint while other Israeli settlers and forces looked on behind them. A man holding a rifle can be heard calling in Arabic for the two Palestinians to drop their knives, after which he begins speaking in Hebrew.
The young girl responds by calling for the men to lower their guns, stop filming, and speak Arabic. Shehab reported that the two Palestinians were returning home from school at the time.
Reports from Israeli media said that the two were apprehended near the entrance of the illegal Israeli settlement of Karnei Shomron, claiming the suspects were holding knifes, and taken in for interrogation with Israeli forces.
The Palestinian Prisoner's Society later identified the two students as 15-year-old Marah Luay Jeidi and 16-year-old Salim Hani Abu Hamada.
An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an they were looking into the case.
Israeli forces have detained a number of Palestinians for allegedly being in possession of knives or having intentions to carry out attacks on Israelis in recent months following a spike in violence that has left 15 Israelis dead in 2016, while 112 Palestinians were killed by Israelis during the same period.
However, Israeli authorities' version of events have been challenged in a number of incidents, while rights groups have also widely documented the mistreatment, abuse, and torture of Palestinian youth in detention, and the harsh interrogation practices used to force their confessions.