The arrest usually begins in the child’s bedroom.
Soldiers break into children’s houses and enter their bedrooms while they are sleeping. They blindfold the children and bind their hands using plastic ties and then put them in the military vehicles for a long time. Then the children are transferred to the interrogation centers, and the soldiers take them without giving the parents any details about the charges against their children or where they will be detained.
B’tselem report: Soldiers detained 4 children ages six to nine, handcuffed 3 of them. Kafr Qadum, November 15, 2013.
Such assaults, carried out by occupation forces against children in the middle of the night, can cause the children to lose feeling, deal with cramps and severe pain and experience sensory deprivation in their extremities, stemming from the fact that they are blindfolded and their hands are cuffed behind their backs for long periods of time.
When a child is arrested, the soldiers cover his eyes so that he can’t see anything as they are placing him in the military vehicle. The child is awoken in darkness, with his eyes covered, and he often experiences severe pain as he is being assaulted while being transferred to the vehicle. The child is rendered helpless and unable to protect himself, as his hands are tied up behind his back.
The child is unable to protect himself or to be released from such a situation. As a child, he feels helpless and unsatisfied with his reactions. Children often do not understand that their feelings of helplessness and weakness are normal reactions to an abnormal situation, and instead they blame themselves for being responsible for the situation; such blame may cause immense psychological and physiological stress.
A 15-year old child: “They handcuffed me for several days and the ties were very tight. I was with other children who were also handcuffed and my hands were hurting from how tight the ties were.”
Handcuffing is psychologically correlated with the complete loss of control, difficulty with concentration and decision-making, and a sense of helplessness. These feelings and symptoms can affect the life of a child long after arrest,and may be reflected in the areas of his social relationships with his family, friends, as well as at school and learning achievements.
Mahmood Jrere from DAM (The Hip Hop Band in the photo):
Golda Meir said: “The old will die and the young will forget.”
Indeed the old have begun to die, but the the young have not forgotten.
They are persecuted by the State of Israel.
The occupation’s brutality towards the children of Palestine is manifested in the establishment of special rooms for them, rooms designed to break these children and to terrorize the next generation, rooms that create fears and erect barriers to prevent these children from challenging the occupation.
The world knows nothing about the systematic oppression of our children. This campaign aims to shine a light on what happens in the dark of Palestinian nighttime. We must not tolerate or accept these occurrences, and we must pressure the international community to not tolerate or accept these occurrences either.
At the photograph’s site, there were discussions (artistic and cultural) about how to bind the wires over our eyes, around our feet and our hands, about what type of wires are best to use. While we didn’t agree, we remained bound as we debated and discussed, until the decision was made. The sensation of helplessness, of obedience, the loss of feeling, and especially the perspective… the nightmare lasted a half an hour.
I won’t say too much, but I do want to note that we are all in our late twenties and thirties- what must a child put in a similar situation feel? I don’t think that these children see colors, or that a minute in their hours is sixty seconds long, as it is for the rest of society.
1) The Israeli law regarding the arrests of minors, which is aligned with international agreements regarding the rights of minors, forbids the binding of children (ie., the tying of their hands and feet) in the cases in which they do not pose a threat.
2) According to Article 10 of the Minors Law of 1971, it is in general forbidden to bind detained minors; it is permitted to do so only in special cases, and in those cases, for the minimum amount of time possible.
3) The 1971 law also details the police officer’s obligation to articulate and explain to the child his intentions to bind him or her. In any event, the decision to bind a child must be made with consideration of the child’s health and the potential psychological and physical impacts on the child.
4) All of the aforementioned information makes it clear that the binding of children is not necessary and should not be carried out in the majority of cases.
5) There is no part of the law which grants permission to blindfold or cover the eyes of the minor; such an action is not legal in the process of arrest or transfer.
6) We see the rights of children consistently violated and trampled. The aforementioned law has virtually no bearing on reality: the “special cases” which permit the binding of children are a matter of routine. In the shadow of the occupation, “special cases” are not the exception: they are the rule.