Israel’s policy of house arrest for Palestinian children under fire

East Jerusalem - Israeli Border Police officers arrest a Palestinian boy (Mahfouz Abu Turk - APA Images)

Middle East Monitor  /  March 24, 2022

A human rights organization, on Thursday, decried Israel’s policy of placing Palestinian children under house arrest, Anadolu News Agency reports.

In a statement, the Beirut-based Palestinian Association for Human Rights – known as Shahed – said Israeli authorities continue to oppress Palestinians, especially residents of Jerusalem, including placing children below 14 years under house arrest.

Israel “ignores all international covenants and agreements,” the group said, noting that the self-proclaimed Jewish state “seeks to fragment Palestinian families in many ways.”

Shahed said Israel adopts the policy of house arrest “to reduce the number of children in prisons in an effort to preserve its alleged democratic image before the international community.”

The NGO explained that children are confined in their houses, or that of a family member, and are tied with foot bracelets to track their movement.

It also stressed that house arrests are more difficult for children than imprisonment, as they risk extension of trial and longer period of arrests.

Shahed called on the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to put effort to protect the rights of Palestinian children and urged the international community to condemn Israel’s repressive measures against Palestinians and violation of their human rights.

According to data compiled by organizations concerned with prisoners’ rights, 500 – 700 Palestinian children are arrested annually by Israeli forces, with around 130 children in Jerusalem under house arrest.