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Israeli forces violently detain Palestinian boy in broad daylight, 16 others in night raids

Feb. 8, 2017 4:08 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 12, 2017 12:39 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces violently detained a Palestinian minor off the street in broad daylight on Wednesday afternoon, while at least 16 other Palestinians were detained earlier from across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem in predawn raids.

According to locals in Aida refugee camp in the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem, Israeli forces raided the camp Wednesday afternoon and violently detained a boy in the street as he was walking home from school.

Witnesses said they saw the military jeep suddenly careen into the camp before soldiers emerged and grabbed him, asserting that there were no clashes or stone throwing in the area at the time, and that the boy was walking home from school.

Locals later identified the boy as 14-year-old Ali Jawarish. Bethlehem-based NGO BADIL said that he was beaten by soldiers inside the vehicle.

In a predawn raid on Wednesday in Aida, Israeli forces had also delivered a notice to an unidentified Palestinian youth to meet with Israeli intelligence for interrogation, according to locals, which followed a raid in the camp Tuesday evening.
Locals in Aida have reported escalated military procedures over the past several months, creating what some residents have called a perpetual “atmosphere of fear.”

Residents of the camp say that Israeli soldiers intentionally provoke local youth with tear gas or bullets in order to start clashes with the young Palestinians who sometimes throw stones at Rachel’s Tomb.

Last Thursday, hundreds of Israeli soldiers stormed the refugee camp in the predawn hours and detained 12 of its residents, including four minors.

As of Tuesday, the majority of those detained remained in custody, with at least one, Fathi Abu Srour, having been released, according to local sources.

Israeli forces carry out detention raids across the occupied territory on a near-nightly basis, with the UN recording an average of 95 weekly raids in the West Bank in 2016, and 100 weekly raids on average thus far in 2017.

A joint report by Palestinian prisoners’ organizations said that over the course of January alone, 590 Palestinians were detained across the occupied territory, including 128 children, 14 women, and one journalist.

According to prisoners’ rights group Addameer, a total of 6,500 Palestinians were being held in Israeli prisons as of January.

Overnight detentions in the southern West Bank

Locals sources told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the town of Yatta in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron before dawn on Wednesday, searching several houses and detaining brothers Said and Hassan Jibril Murr.

Local activist Muhammad Awwad said that Israeli forces also raided the Khillet al-Ein area in Beit Ummar north of Hebron, searched Taha Muhammad Ahmad Abu Maria’s house and detained his 16-year-old son Wassim.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed one detention in Beit Ummar, while a statement from the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) released later Wednesday confirmed the identities of all three detainees from the Hebron district.

In the district of Bethlehem, Israeli forces raided the village of Husan and detained Hassan Ali Hamamra and Muhammad Samih Hamamra after searching their houses, local sources and the PPS statement said.

The two detentions were confirmed by the Israeli army.

PPS added that in Beit Fajjar south of Bethlehem, Israeli forces detained former prisoner Jihad Ahmad Thawabta as well as Fadi Fayez Taqatqa. An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed the two detentions.

Israeli forces had also delivered an interrogation summons to an unidentified Palestinian youth during a predawn raid Wednesday elsewhere in Bethlehem city, according to locals.

Northern West Bank

In the northern occupied West Bank district of Tulkarem, PPS said that Israeli forces detained 32-year-old Muhannad Sufian Zaki Matar after raiding his house.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed a Palestinian was detained in Tulkarem, saying the detention was made in the village of Dhinnaba.

The spokesperson said that three Palestinians were also detained in the village of Beita in the district of Nablus.

East Jerusalem

PPS said that five Palestinian youths were detained in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhoods of Umm Tuba and Jabal al-Mukabbir, identifiying them as Malik Abu Teir, Muhammad Abu Tir, Mustafa Abu Tir, Muhammad al-Qunbar, and Abdullah Shqeirat.
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