Detention figures
End of September 2020:

Security Prisoners

Adults: 4,027
Children: 157
Total: 4,184

Percentage held in Israel:

Adults: 81%
Children: 73%

Administrative Detention

Adults: 371
Children: 2
Total: 373

Criminal Prisoners

Adults: 1,262
Children: 6
Total: 1,268

Grand total

Adults: 5,289
Children: 163
Total: 5,452

More statistics
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Newsletter - November 2019
Detention figures – According to the Israeli Prison Service (IPS), as of 30 November 2019 there were 4,638 Palestinians (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza) held as “security prisoners” in detention facilities including 182 children (12-17 years). In the case of children there was a 2% decrease in the number compared with the previous month and an annual decrease of 26% compared with 2018. Two children are currently held in administrative detention. According to the IPS, 64% of child detainees were forcibly transferred and/or unlawfully detained in Israel in November in violation of Article 76 of the Fourth Geneva Convention and potentially Article 8 of the Rome Statute of the ICC. More statistics 


ICC Prosecutor announces “reasonable basis” to investigate war crimes – jurisdiction to be determined by the Court – On 20 December the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced that the Prosecutor is satisfied that there is a basis to initiate an investigation into the situation in Palestine and has referred the question of territorial jurisdiction to the Court. The Office stated that “[T]here is a reasonable basis to believe that war crimes have been or are being committed in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, and the Prosecution has identified potential cases arising from the situation which would be admissible.” A decision is expected within 120 days. Read more


US policy shift undermines Israel’s legal rationale for military courts in the West Bank –  The recent statement by US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, that “the establishment of Israeli civilian settlements in the West Bank is not per se inconsistent with international law” by implication rejects the application of the Fourth Geneva Convention to the West Bank. Perhaps one unintended consequence arising from the Secretary of State’s announcement is that US policy now contradicts Israel’s own legal rationale for prosecuting Palestinian civilians, including children, in military courts in the West Bank. This latest US policy shift now casts further doubt on the lawfulness of these military courts.  Read more


70th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions -  2019 marked 70 years since the adoption of the Geneva Conventions. The Conventions gained almost unanimous support as a result of collective experiences gained from two world wars and cover the treatment of the sick and wounded, prisoners of war and the protection of civilians during conflict. Geneva IV, regulating the treatment of civilians during military occupations, is accepted as applying to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in over 40 Security Council resolutions and by the International Court of Justice. Geneva IV permitted Israel to temporarily establish military courts for Palestinians in 1967 but prohibits settlement construction. Video


75% of Congressional representatives fail to defend Geneva IV – 107 members of the House of Representatives recently wrote to Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, rebuking the State Department’s recent decision to reverse decades of bipartisan US foreign policy on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The letter stated that “[T]his State Department decision blatantly disregards Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention which affirms that any occupying power shall not “deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.” In ignoring international law, this administration has undermined America’s moral standing and sent a dangerous message to those who do not share our values.” Letter


A child’s testimony – On 5 November 2019, a 17-year-old minor from Aida refugee camp was arrested by Israeli soldiers at 3:00 a.m. He reports consulting with a lawyer and being informed of his right to silence prior to interrogation. He was released without charge on 12 November. “I woke up at around 3:00 a.m. to the sound of a soldier’s voice in my bedroom. The soldier told me to get up and I did. I soon discovered that about 15 soldiers were in our home. The soldiers gathered my family in my parents’ bedroom and the commander told my father they wanted to take me for questioning because they suspected me of throwing stones." Read more


A soldier’s video testimony: “Breaking the routine” – In this video a former Israeli soldier provides a testimony to Breaking the Silence describing how the army “maps” Palestinian homes – at first it was exciting and then it became routine. “I consider the mappings a part of punishment, actually. Of the people who … I mean a village that caused trouble underwent 'vigorous’ mapping. At time there was a security aspect and at times it was a way to keep the soldiers alert. I can’t say for certain that the mappings were a result of reason or another. If felt like you could give them several descriptions.” Video


745 Testimonies                                      Annual Report (2019)                                                  Videos