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Video: Israeli soldiers use handcuffed Palestinian teen as human shield as they fire at protestors

Ali Abunimah

19gd200970804300430_1924094329_o.jpg

April 19, 2013



Israeli soldiers used a handcuffed Palestinian teenager as a human shield as they fired at protestors in the occupied West Bank village of Abu Dis on Friday.

The incident was witnessed by independent journalist Huthifa Jamous who took photographs. Jamous also posted video footage of the incident on his Facebook page that was shot by Twitter user @Kate_Arno.

Jamous told The Electronic Intifada by telephone that the incident occurred during a protest in solidarity with hunger striking prisoner Samer Issawi in the village which is adjacent to occupied Jerusalem.

According to the Jerusalem Media Center, Israeli occupation forces opened fire on protestors using tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets and youths responded with stones and empty bottles.

Handcuffed and forced to march down street



Israeli soldiers use a Palestinian teenager as a human shield in the occupied West Bank village of Abu Dis on 19 April 2013.

(Huthifa Jamous)

In the video, a group of Israeli soldiers can be seen taking a Palestinian youth, Muhammad R., age 17, out of the back of an armored vehicle and then frog-marching him down the street.

The youth appears to be handcuffed and his hands are held above his head by one of the occupation soldiers. As the soldiers force the teenager down the street, three of them raise their weapons and aim them, apparently at protestors who are outside the frame.

The soldiers then stop, and while deliberately exposing the youth, fire two shots toward the protestors.

Another video includes footage of youths defending the village from Israeli occupation forces using stones.



Using human shields: a common Israeli war crime

The use of any person as a human shield, especially a prisoner, is a serious war crime, but as BĺTselem reports, Israeli occupation forces have a long history of engaging in this barbaric practice.

In February, Defence for Children International - Palestine Section reported another case where Israeli soldiers kidnapped and then used nine-year-old Mustafa Wahdan as a human shield during a protest near Ofer Prison, where many Palestinian political prisoners are detained.

Because of the near-total impunity Israeli soldiers enjoy for crimes against Palestinians, soldiers are rarely held to account.

In one of the very rare cases were action was taken, two soldiers were tried for using Majid Rabah, then aged nine, as a human shield during Israelĺs 2008-2009 invasion of Gaza. The soldiers were found guilty but given a symbolic sentence.



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