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U.N. report on military’s abuse of Palestinian children is redundant, Israel says

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel said a United Nations committee that accused its military of mistreating Palestinian children recycled information from another U.N. agency’s report.

“Palestinian children arrested by (Israeli) military and police are systematically subject to degrading treatment, and often to acts of torture, are interrogated in Hebrew, a language they did not understand, and sign confessions in Hebrew in order to be released,” the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child said in its report released Thursday. The report covers the past 10 years.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry said it had responded to a similar report by UNICEF in March and questioned whether the Committee on the Rights of the Child investigation broke any new ground.

In the 10 years since the last report, about 7,000 Palestinian children aged 12 to 17, and some younger, were arrested, interrogated and detained by the Israeli military, according to the new report.

Israel did not cooperate with the investigation, according to Reuters.

The report, which also acknowledged Israel’s real security concerns, accused Israel of using Palestinian children as human shields and informants.

 

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