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  • Israeli soldiers detain a Palestinian boy during clashes in the West Bank.

    Israeli soldiers detain a Palestinian boy during clashes in the West Bank. | Photo: Reuters

Published 22 March 2019

Though the age of culpability is 12-years-old by law, the soldiers went into the school and arrested the child while carrying guns.

Israeli forces arrested a 10-year-old boy from his classroom and beat the deputy head of the school in the West Bank Wednesday. Activists posted a video of the incident.

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Israeli soldiers arrested the fourth-grader in the Ziad Jaber School in the Jabir neighborhood adjacent to the Ibrahimi Mosque in the city of Hebron. It is likely they exceeded their authority as the age of culpability is 12 under both Israeli civilian and military law, according to activists and legal experts. 

In the video, an Israeli army officer can be seen grabbing the boy. A few Palestinian adults, including the school’s vice principal, attempt to prevent the soldiers from taking the child, allegedly for throwing stones.

According to local sources, the civil affairs and the Palestinian military liaison have intervened and the child has been released. 

Sources said the civil affairs called on the Israeli side to open an investigation into the incident and not to repeat it, adding that it was the first time a school was stormed, a child was arrested and his teachers attacked by Israeli soldiers.

In other documented incidents over the years, Israeli soldiers have arrested and detained Palestinian children as young as seven, particularly in Hebron where hundreds of Israeli soldiers are permanently stationed alongside hundreds of Jewish settlers and tens of thousands of Palestinians.

While Jewish settlers in the city are subject to Israeli civilian law, Palestinians in the same area are subject to military law and can be arrested by Israeli troops at any time, 972 Magazine reported.

Last year, Palestinian-based human rights group Addameer has reported that there are currently 270 Palestinian child prisoners being held in Israeli prisons. At least 50 of them are under 16 years old.

Israeli-based human rights group B'tselem published a report in October last year placing the number of children in prison at 239; this number corresponds to the those registered until the end of August 2018. 


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