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

Bookmark and Share
  change font size تصغير الخط تكبير الخط print
Home » Newsletter »

Newsletter - May 2023

Detention figures – According to data issued quarterly by the Israeli Prison Service (IPS), as of 31 March 2023, there were 4,747 Palestinians (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza) held as “security prisoners” in detention facilities including 151 children (12-17 years). In the case of children there was a 1 percent increase in the number compared with the previous month and an annual increase of 11 percent compared with 2022. Ten children were held in administrative detention without charge or trial. According to the IPS, 70 percent of child detainees were transferred to prisons inside Israel in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. More statistics             


Evidence update: access to lawyers - Under Israeli military law a detainee has the right to consult with a lawyer prior to interrogation. There are exceptions but generally these do not apply to children. Based on 1,047 testimonies collected from Palestinian children detained by the Israeli military in the occupied West Bank, 63 percent of children continue to be denied this basic legal right. In the 37 percent of cases where children do consult with a lawyer prior to interrogation, the evidences indicates that: almost all consultations are by phone, not in person, and of minimal duration; in many cases the phone is on loud speaker with the interrogator present; and only in a few cases is a child provided with a written statement regarding his/her rights. Read more


High Court petition: night arrests and summonses - A pilot scheme to issue summonses in lieu of arresting children from the occupied West Bank at night was introduced in 2014. The scheme’s introduction followed widespread criticism of the practice. At the scheme's height in 2015, written summonses were issued in 10 percent of cases, but by 2020 had fallen to just 1 percent. In 2020, Hamoked petitioned Israel's High Court seeking an end to night-time child arrests. The petition has had a number of hearings, most recently on 29 May 2023, when the Court gave the State 30 days to address two issues: first, to consider publishing the secret procedures governing the use of summones; and secondly, to consider the child's age group before arresting at night. 


Who will protect the thousands of Palestinian children Israel detains? - From nighttime detentions without a court order, to blindfolding and beatings; the silence of Israeli mental health therapists in the face of severe harm to Palestinian children is particularly alarming. Every year, Israeli security forces detain about 1,000 Palestinian children from the West Bank and another 1,000 from East Jerusalem. The children are taken from the street, their schools and even their beds. The methods used in these detentions are extremely damaging to children and youths, both physically and mentally. In fact, they’re prohibited under both Israeli law and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which Israel has signed. Opinion - Haaretz


A mother's testimony - On 16 May 2023, Israeli soldiers entered a Palestinian family home in Husan, in the occupied West Bank, at 3:00 a.m. and arrested a 14-year-old boy. The boy's mother describes how 10 soldiers entered their home "ready for war". The commander listed the names of all her children before identifying her 14-year-old son for arrest. The soldiers remained in her home for 45 minutes before leaving with her son. The soldiers did not provide the family with any documentation or information about the arrest. She reports that her son was released 7 days later after the family paid NIS 3,000. She describes how the heavy Israeli military presence in her village, close to the settlement of Bittar Illit, is a constant source of friction. Read more


A child's testimony - On 14 May 2023, a 16-year-old minor from Husan, in the occupied West Bank, was arrested by Israeli soldiers from his place of work at 2:00 p.m. He describes being painfully zip-tied and blindfolded before being taken to a military base where he was questioned without being informed of his rights under military law. He reports that the commander who questioned him threatened to deny his family permits and impose a fine of NIS 30,000 if he did not confess to participating in protests. Later, he was taken to the police station in the settlement of Bitar Illit for further interrogation. He was then taken to Al Mascobiyeh interrogation centre in West Jerusalem and Ofer prison. He was released without charge 10 days later. Read more


1,047 Testimonies                     MCW Annual Report (2022)                          Two Kids a Day (Trailer)