The State of Palestine’s Children Under Occupation

15 October 2015

FACT SHEET: THE STATE OF PALESTINE’S CHILDREN UNDER OCCUPATION

“I urge Israel to take concrete and immediate steps, including by reviewing existing policies and practices, to protect children, to prevent the killing and maiming of children, and to respect the special protections afforded to schools and hospitals. An essential measure in that regard is ensuring accountability for perpetrators of alleged violations.”

  • Report of the Secretary-General, 5 June 2015

Current Reality

  • One Palestinian child was killed by the IOF every 3 days between 2000 and 2013.[i]
  • 1 October – 13 October: 8 children killed by the IOF across the OPT. This includes Amjad Al-Jundi (17), Abdel-Rahman Obeidallah (11), IshaqBadran (16), Ahmad Sharaka (13), Hasan Khaled Manasra (15), Mohammad Al-Raqab (15), Hesham Barbakh (13), Khalil Othman (15), and Rahaf Hassan (2).[ii]
  • Since 1967, 95,000 Palestinian children have been detained by the IOF, 62% of whom have likely been subjected to some form of physical violence.[iii]
  • Each year, approximately 700 Palestinian children are arrested, interrogated, and detained by the IOF. Children consistently experience strip-searches, physical and psychological abuse, and other forms of harassment and intimidation during forced interrogations and while imprisoned. [iv]
  • 15 – 28 September: 40 children arrested by the IOF in the Jerusalem governorate.[v]
  • 29 September – 5 October: At least 14 children arrested by the IOF in Jerusalem.[vi]
  • Children are severely affected by the current deteriorating situation in the OPT. Since 15 September, the IOF has injured 119 children, detained 75, and temporarily detained 30 at checkpoints and in residential areas.[vii]
  • 15 – 28 September: 43 children injured during clashes with the IOF in the Gaza Strip.[viii]
  • 15 – 28 September: 37 children injured during IOF search and arrest operations in 6 West Bank cities and villages.[ix]

The West Bank and East Jerusalem

  • Violence: In 2014, 13 boys were killed, 12 by the IOF and one by settlers. 1,218 children were injured, more than half under the age of 12. 231 children were shot by IOF live ammunition and 530 by rubber-coated [x]
  • Settler Violence: 2 Palestinian children were burned to death by extremist Israeli settlers:
  • July 2015: 18 month-old Ali Dawabsheh was killed in an arson attack in Douma.[xi]
  • August 2014: Mohammed Abu Khdeir, 16 year-old Palestinian, was kidnapped, beaten, and burnt alive by Israeli settlers in East Jerusalem.[xii]
  • Displacement: In 2014, half of the 1,215 Palestinians displaced by demolitions were children.[xiii]
  • 77 Palestinians – more than half children – were displaced after IOF house demolitions in the West Bank and Jerusalem over 3 days in January 2015.[xiv]
  • On 17 August 2015, IOF demolished 22 structures in 4 Bedouin communities in the Jerusalem periphery, displacing 78 Palestinians, including 49 children.[xv]
  • Education: Schoolchildren are often intimidated and terrorized by extremist settlers and the IOF. Extremist settlers harass students, throw eggs and trash, and attempt to hit them with cars as they walk to school. There are instances of settlers throwing rocks, glass bottles and Molotov cocktails through classroom windows. The IOF disrupts class time by holding students at checkpoints and detains backpack-wearing children on a regular basis.[xvi]

The Gaza Strip

  • 2014 Israeli war on Gaza: 557 children were killed – an average of 10 children per day.[xvii] 4,249 children were injured by the IOF, many critically and permanently disabled.[xviii]
  • Displacement: 18,000 Palestinian families were left homeless and need long-term support to rebuild their lives.[xix]
  • Education: At least 262 schools, including UN schools, were damaged in IOF airstrikes. Three public schools were completely destroyed and at least 23 severely damaged. 274 kindergartens were damaged.[xx]
  • Trauma: 475,000 children require direct and specialized psychosocial support.[xxi]
  • Blockade: The blockade takes a heavy toll on humanitarian assistance for more than 80% of families in Gaza. It impacts the provision of health services, which suffer from a lack of adequate equipment, instruments and essential medicine.[xxii]
    • 66 tons of drugs and consumables intended for the population still await clearance from the Israeli occupation for entry to Gaza.[xxiii]

[i] MEMO, One Palestinian child has been killed by Israel every 3 days for the past 13 years, 4 June 2013

[ii] WAFA, Health Ministry: 30 Palestinians Killed by Israel since Start of October, 13 October 2015

[iii] Military Court Watch, Widespread, systematic and institutionalized abuse of minors in the West Bank, 10 June 2015

[iv] UNICEF, Children in Israeli Military Detention, February 2013

[v] UN OCHA oPt, Protection of Civilians, 15 – 28 September 2015

[vi] UN OCHA oPt, Protection of Civilians, 29 September – 5 October 2015

[vii] PLO-NAD, Palestinian Monitoring Group Daily Reports, 15 September – 12 October 2015

[viii] UN OCHA oPt, Protection of Civilians, 15 – 28 September 2015

[ix] UN OCHA oPt, Protection of Civilians, 15 – 28 September 2015

[x] General Assembly, Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, 5 June 2015

[xi]Haaretz, Palestinian Infant Burned to Death in West Bank Arson Attack; IDF Blames ‘Jewish Terror’, 31 July 2015

[xii] Guardian, Palestinian boy Mohammed Abu Khdeir was burned alive, says official, 5 July 2014

[xiii]UNRWA, 2014 oPt Emergency Appeal Annual Report, 2015

[xiv] UN News Centre, Demolitions, displacements in West Bank ‘must stop immediately,’ urges UN envoy, 23 January 2015

[xv] UN OCHA, Humanitarian Bulletin Monthly Report, August 2015

[xvi] Defense for Children International, Palestinian schoolchildren terrorized by settler vigilantes, soldiers, 27 June 2014

[xvii] UN OCHA, Fragmented Lives Humanitarian Overview, March 2015

[xviii]General Assembly, Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, 5 June 2015

[xix] UNICEF, Gaza Children on the Edge, 2014

[xx] General Assembly, Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, 5 June 2015

[xxi] UNICEF, Gaza Children on the Edge, 2014

[xxii] General Assembly, Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, 5 June 2015

[xxiii] UNICEF, State of Palestine Humanitarian Situation Report, August 2015

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