Demand Israeli authorities immediately end solitary confinement of Palestinian child detainees
Israeli authorities routinely detain Palestinian children in solitary confinement solely for interrogation purposes, a practice that amounts to torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, as documented by Defense for Children International - Palestine.
Join us in urging the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom to demand that Israeli authorities immediately end the practice of using solitary confinement on Palestinian child detainees, whether in pretrial detention for interrogation purposes or as a form of punishment. The prohibition must be enshrined in law.
Over a four-year period, between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2019, DCIP documented 108 cases where Palestinian children detained by the Israeli military were held in isolation for two or more days during the interrogation period. All were boys aged 14-17. Children were isolated for an average of 14 days and Israeli authorities held one child in solitary confinement for 30 days.
Evidence and documentation collected by DCIP overwhelmingly indicate that the isolation of Palestinian children within the Israeli military detention system is practiced solely to obtain a confession for a specific offense or to gather intelligence under interrogation. DCIP has found no evidence demonstrating a legally justifiable use of isolation of Palestinian child detainees, such as for disciplinary, protective, or medical reasons. Solitary confinement has been used, almost exclusively, during pre-charge and pretrial detention. Solitary confinement is designed to psychologically break children and coerce them into confessing.
Israel has the dubious distinction of being the only country in the world that automatically and systematically detains and prosecutes children in military courts that lack fundamental fair trial rights and protections. Israel detains and prosecutes between 500 and 700 Palestinian children in military courts each year. Nearly three out of four Palestinian children detained by Israeli forces experience some form of physical violence, according to documentation collected by DCIP.
End solitary confinement
President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson:
We, the undersigned, urge you to demand that Israeli authorities immediately end the practice of using solitary confinement on Palestinian child detainees, whether in pretrial detention for interrogation purposes or as a form of punishment. The prohibition must be enshrined in law.