Israeli forces were recently caught harassing and assaulting Palestinian girls as they were watching clashes between childrenÂ and Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank.
Israeli human rights group Bâ€™Tselem published a video, last week, showing the Israeli occupation soldiers also trying to kidnap one of the Palestinian girls.
Bâ€™Tselem said, according to Days of Palestine, that a group of Palestinian boys and teens threw rocks at Israeli forces, who fired rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canisters at them, in addition to throwingÂ stun grenades.
â€śSeven women and girls from the extended Jaradat family stood outside one of the familyâ€™s homes watching the clashes,â€ť the group stated. â€śFour Border Police jeeps arrived on the scene and the policemen who got out began pursuing the youths as they fled. The Jaradat girls also fled.
â€śA videographer who came on the scene captured the end of the incident on video. The clip shows a masked Border Police officer gripping 13-year-old Khadijeh Jaradat by the arm, while a Border Police commanding officer pushed away her mother, who was trying to help her.
â€śAfter the officer let go of Khadijeh, he was caught on video assaulting her cousin, 20-year-old Duha Badawi, beating her on the head.â€ť
Later on, â€śBâ€™Tselemâ€™s inquiries indicate that Siraj Jaradat, 28, fled with her 10-year-old cousin Samar to the latterâ€™s home. Three of Samarâ€™s sisters were home at that time: Hiba, 18, Shirin, 17 and Kifah, 11. The two closed the front yardâ€™s iron gate behind them, went inside, and then heard loud banging at the front door.
â€śSiraj and Hiba said that the police pounded on the door and kicked it until they broke the lock, and then came inside.
â€śThe women and girls, who were frightened by the officers, screamed and held on to each other. One of the officers approached Siraj, grabbed her by the shoulder, and pulled her out of the house. Siraj, who was screaming and crying, told the officer she had done nothing.â€ť
â€śBâ€™Tselem said that after Ibrahim Jaradat, Khadijehâ€™s and Hibaâ€™s father, had intervened and got the girls and his wife away, and after the Border Police commanding officer kept the officer from hitting Duha again, the officers left the village without making any arrests.
â€śIn the testimony, she Duha gave on 21 January 2017, Hiba said she still had pain in her back, and other parts of her body, as a result of the officerâ€™s assault.â€ť
â€śThe violence of the Border Police officers, who detained, assaulted and hit women and girls, the youngest of whom was 13, is yet another in a long list of incidents documented by Bâ€™Tselem over the years, in which security forces used violence against Palestinian children and youths.
â€śThe recurrence of this conduct, and the lack of accountability indicates it is tacitly condoned by the most senior officials of Israelâ€™s security establishment.â€ť
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Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip and continues, into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.