Report: US State Department Human Rights Report 2015

Ramallah, May 5, 2016–A U.S. government human rights report released in April highlights grave violations against Palestinian children living under Israeli military occupation.

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The annual country reports on human rights practices, which include a specific section covering the situation of human rights in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), raises a number of issues related to ill-treatment of Palestinian child prisoners and denial of fair trial rights in Israeli military courts. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry released the annual report at a press conference in Washington on April 13, 2016.

The report notes other grave violations against Palestinian children, including the use of excessive force and unlawful killings in the occupied West Bank  and the killing and maiming of Palestinian children and attacks on schools in Gaza by Israeli forces in 2014.

It also highlights lack of accountability for violence by Israeli forces against Palestinians, including children. It includes an update on legal proceedings against an Israeli border police officer charged for the physical assault on Tariq Abu Khdeir, a Palestinian-American teen beaten unconscious while handcuffed in July 2014 in East Jerusalem. A Jerusalem magistrate’s court convicted the officer and sentenced him to 45 days of community service and a four-month suspended sentence. Israeli authorities failed to charge a second officer involved in the beating.

Each year the U.S. Department of State drafts and publishes country reports on human rights practices, known as the Human Rights Reports, that cover the situation of human rights in countries around the world.

Since 2007, each annual country report on Israel and the OPT has included data and information on ill-treatment and torture of Palestinian children in Israeli military detention, denial of fair trials rights in Israeli military courts, and other grave violations against children committed by Israeli forces and settlers.

Defense for Children International - Palestine (DCIP) is a local, independent Palestinian human rights organization committed to securing a just and viable future for Palestinian children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.