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Israeli court sentences 14-year-old to two months in prison, $1523 fine

By Editor - January 26, 2015
Section: [Main News] [Behind Bars]
Tags: [Ofer prison] [child arrests] [youth] [prisoners]

Shackled and in tears, 14-year-old Malak al-Khatib was led out of the Israeli military court at Ofer prison on Thursday to a military vehicle that would escort her to the Hasharon detention center, where she is to serve out a two-month sentence for alleged rock throwing and the possession of a knife. 

The eighth grader from the village of Beitin, near Ramallah, has been held in Israeli custody ever since she was detained on 31 December 2014. On Thursday, nearly a month later, she was sentenced to two months in prison and charged with a fine of 6000 shekels ($1523).

“She was leaving school after attending her last exam for the first semester when all of a sudden soldiers jumped at her, handcuffed her hands and took her with them,” Ali al-Khatib, Malak’s father, told Wafa News Agency

“When I went to the detention center to see Malak, thinking a misunderstanding must have took place, soldiers told me, 'she is not a child, she scared us and threatened the life of a soldier,’” the girl’s father recalled. 

Malak is set to serve out her two-month sentence at Israel’s Hasharon detention center in the northern West Bank. Her father told local media that she is being held with three other female prisoners, who are taking care of the girl and providing her with emotional support. 

Malak al-Khattib is the youngest prisoner currently serving a sentence in Israeli jails. She is one of the 7,000 Palestinian children arrested since the start of the Second Intifada back in September 2000. 

According to the rights organization Defense for Children International—Palestine, “Israel is the only state to automatically and systematically prosecute children in military courts that lack basic standards of due process.” 

A recent report on the arrest of minors put out by the rights group details that “Around 500-700 Palestinian children, some as young as 12, are arrested, detained and prosecuted in the Israeli military detention system each year. The majority of Palestinian child detainees are charged with throwing stones.” 























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