The Israeli Shin Bet Security Services admitted on Sunday that the Israeli army is arresting relatives of Palestinian political prisoners and interrogating them in order to “extract confessions from the detainees”, Israeli online daily, Haaretz reported.Haaretz also said that the head of the Interrogation Department at the Shin Bet told the Israeli Knesset’s Law and Justice Committee that this method was used only once.
The Israeli Public Committee Against Torture submitted a report to the Knesset committee on Sunday, stating the Shin Bet justifies arrests of family members of Palestinian detainees in order to practice pressure on them.
The report also stated that this method is used against detainees who were subjected to severe torture during interrogation, and that in one case, a tortured detainee attempted suicide.
Haaretz stated that the Shin Bet said that in the “one case” they the security services admitted to its error and said that they will not use this method again.
A Shin Bet official said that the security devices wrote a report about the incident “and fixed it”.
The official added that the Shin bet decided to stop this method, yet he added that the Shin Bet will not hesitate in arresting and interrogating relatives of the detainees if the relatives “are suspected of involvement in a terror”, Haaretz said.
Several Palestinian and Israeli Human Rights groups repeatedly published reports of arrest and interrogation of family members of detainees who are under interrogations. In several cases, the interrogators threatened to rape wives, mothers or sisters of the detainees.
The violation contradicts the basic principles of Human Rights and constitutes a war crime.