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Despite The Pandemic Palestinian Children Detention Continues

Mohammad YOUSEF - Araştırmacı
18 Nisan 2021 12:38
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No releasing of prisoners

THE spread of COVID-19 has changed the image of life all over the globe. All states have taken some serious measures in different aspects in order to cope with the new virus. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said that urgent actions should be taken to prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading. one of these actions included releasing the prisoners from detention and other closed facilities, as part of overall efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

There are still some responsible countries such as Turkey in Middle east during the pandemic. On the other hand, it is not easy to understand Israel’s unhuman attitude. Israel refused the appeals of releasing Palestinian prisoners and still detains more than 5,000 Palestinians in their jails at least 200 of them are children.

Palestinian children detention -Increasing instead of decreasing

Despite the pandemic, Israeli forces are increasingly arresting Palestinian children. By March 31, Israel had detained 194 more children compared to January, there is a 6 % increase in the number of children. Moreover, 60 % of Palestinian children in prison are being held before being convicted of any disciplinary actions. Israel continues to practice its racial segregation against Palestinians. A notable example of that is releasing 500 Jewish criminals to a detention center (house) while refusing to release any Palestinians.

There’s a worldwide consensus that children are categorized as vulnerable groups against diseases. Therefore, should get special care especially in the current situation of the coronavirus pandemic. Israeli jails are crowding Palestinian children in extremely unsanitary and inhumane environments which are perfect for such diseases to spread.

Disgrace to humanity

Since there’s a massive number of Palestinian children arrested and held in jails under administrative detention terms which means being detained before they got convicted of anything. This detention is considered a violation of human rights according to the fourth Geneva convention, what made things worse is the spread coronavirus, the thing which put children’s’ life on the brink of danger because of the overcrowded and unhealthy conditions in Israeli detention centers, add to this the lack of proper facilities and health care. The indifference to this problem is a disgrace to humanity as whole. United nation and the international community should take serious measures in order to force Israel to stop detaining Palestinian and release them expeditiously.

New House bill would ban Israel from using US military aid to detain Palestinian children

In order to cope with Palestinian children’s detention by Israel a bill would have to be released in order to limit US military aid to Israel withhold the U.S military aid to Israel, Rep. Betty McCollum, a Minnesota Democrat, has introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives that would withhold funding from Israel over its detention of Palestinian children.

The bill is to “promote human rights for Palestinian children living under Israeli military occupation and require that United States funds do not support military detention, interrogation, abuse, or ill-treatment of Palestinian children, and for other purposes.”

From one hand This kind of bills puts extra pressure on Israel forcing them to release Palestinian children and stop it's continuously violating of human rights, and from the other hand helps in saving Palestinians children’s life from the danger of getting infected by the novel coronavirus.

To date, such efforts have failed to prevent Israel's inhumane activities against the Palestinians. Whether such a study is realistic and whether it will work or not will be determined in the near future.

Consequently, Israel, which is considering leaving even its own old people to die during the Covid-19 pandemic, does not hesitate to provoke Palestinians by violating sacred values ​​with air strikes against Palestinians in Gaza at the beginning of a holy month. On the other hand, Israel's attitude towards children, even in this epidemic environment, takes its place in history as an inhumane practice.