Israeli Knesset Approves Racist Bill to Punish Palestinian Children

Jerusalem, MINA – The Israeli parliament (Knesset) approved a law that allows imprisonment for children under the age of 14, residents of Jerusalem and the interior of Palestine, if they are accused of resisting the occupation.

According to a report by Israeli media Haaretz published on Thursday, the bill proposal was put forward by Knesset member Yitzhak Kreuzer of the right-wing racist Jewish Power party, and was approved by a majority of 44 against 28 against.

Under current law, prison sentences can only be imposed on minors aged 14 and over.

The drafters of the law claim that Palestinian children are dangerous, and can cause loss of life or property, and this requires stricter handling.

On the other hand, the Committee against torture stated that the draft law effectively seeks to deny minors suspected in the draft law of all the protections relating to detention afforded them under the Children’s Act.

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“The proposed law will reduce the right not to shackle suspects in public places, and the right to be brought before a judge within 12 hours for children under 14 years of age,” the statement said.

Separation of adults and minors in custody, and the right to invite parents or relatives to a hearing to discuss detention will also be affected.

“There is nothing between law and security. This law is another dangerous step down a slippery slope, which shows that in the eyes of the supporters of the bill, it is inappropriate to provide children with the legal protections used in most democracies in the world,” the statement said.

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It added that the proposed amendment to the law, if passed would cause serious damage to the body, mind and development of minors. It has also raised fears that the law will be further abused against Palestinian children as part of anti-democratic actions.

“This legislative move is tainted with deep racism,” the statement condemned.

The Committee against Child Detention also condemned the proposal and made a request to the Child Safety Council to act against it.

“We hope that you will not be deaf at this time and stand up for all children living under Israeli law without fear. The bill is violent and contains racist and discriminatory components that will neither benefit youth nor lead to a reduction in crime,” he stressed.

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It is noteworthy that the human rights organization continues to point out that “Israeli law enforcement agencies and police ignore attacks carried out by Jewish settlers against Palestinians, as they often avoid arresting the perpetrators of these attacks.

On the other hand, they seek to legitimize the arrest of Palestinian children. The occupation authorities continue to arrest children and bring them to court and give them prison terms for several years, as happened with the Jerusalem child Ahmed Manasra, who spent his childhood in detention. (T/RE1/P2)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)