Detention figures
End of December 2023:

Security Prisoners

Adults: 8,171
Children: 137
Total: 8,308

Percentage held in Israel:

Adults: 74%
Children: 49%

Administrative Detention

Adults: 3,239
Children: 49
Total: 3,288

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Newsletter - July 2016

Detention figures – The Israeli Prison Service (IPS) has not published updated prison statistics since April 2016 in accordance with an outstanding freedom of information application. No clear reasons have been provided explaining this delay. Prison statistics for January 2008 to April 2016 are available on MCW's website at statistics


Briefing Note and Comparative Graph update - To mark the fourth anniversary since the publication of the UK Foreign Office funded report - Children in Military Custody - MCW has updated a Briefing Note and Comparative Graph covering the main issues of concern facing children during the first 24 hours following their arrest. The Note observes that there has been a 93 per cent increase in detention since 2015 and UNICEF's 2013 finding that ill-treatment "appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalised" is still valid. Following a review of developments the Note also finds that just one of the UK Report's 40 recommendations has been substantially implemented after four years - an implementation rate of 2.5 per cent.
Second debate in UK parliament - On 21 July 2016, a debate on Palestinian children was held in the House of Lords moved by Lord Norman Warner (Video / Transcript). This follows an earlier debate on Palestinian child detainees in the House of Commons on 6 January 2016 (Video / Transcript). The issue of children prosecuted in military courts featured prominently in the debate with reference made to the lack of substantial progress in implementing the recommendations included in the UK lawyers' report (2012) and the UNICEF report (2013). Reference was also made to the danger that prolonged military occupation has in undermining the credibility of the international legal order and the issue of incitement. Read more
UN submission - In July 2016, the new UN Special Rapporteur on Palestine, Professor Michael Lynk, undertook his first official mission to gather first-hand information on the current human rights situation. The mission took place in Amman, Jordan, due to Israel's lack of response to his request to travel to Palestine. In response to a call by the Special Rapporteur for written submissions, MCW lodged an update on the treatment of children held in military custody. The submission, which was in part based on 393 testimonies collected since 2013, highlighted recent developments but found little substantial improvement treatment or the provision of basic legal rights. UN submission
"The terror of the children" by Nobel prizewinner Mario Vargas Llosa - In part two of this special report for El Pais, Nobel literature prizewinner Mario Vargas Llosa describes Israeli defense forces’ system to “prevent terror by sowing panic” among Palestinian children and youths. "The object is not so much to identify the stone-throwers as to introduce an element of fear and insecurity into homes and villages through their children. Fearful of falling victim to one of these nighttime raids in which their homes will be trashed and their children arrested, families become less of a threat. Nonsensical rules, curfews, sudden changes to routine and daily upheavals are part of the same strategy." Read more
Testimony - On 10 May 2016, a 15-year-old youth (U.N.M.H.) from Qalandiya was detained by Israeli soldiers while herding goats and accused of starting a fire. He was released without charge 10 hours later. "I was herding goats on land that belongs to my family near the settlement of Kochav Ya’akov at around 4:30 p.m. when eight Israeli soldiers approached me. One of them asked me what I was doing and I told him I was herding goats. A soldier then took off my T-shirt and tied my hands with two plastic ties to the front. The ties were not painful. They led me away on foot and deliberately tripped me and made me fall into some thorny bushes." Read more
Testimonies                                              Briefing Note (July 2016)                                       Films