Israel probes 'human shields' claim

The Israeli army has said it will investigate allegations its forces used Palestinian civilians as human shields during a raid in the West Bank town of Nablus two weeks ago

Israel probes 'human shields' claim

The Israeli army has said it will investigate allegationsits forces used Palestinian civilians as human shields during a raid inthe West Bank town of Nablustwo weeks ago.

B'Tselem, an Israeli human rights group, said in at leasttwo incidents, Israeli soldiers forced civilians to lead them in house-to-housesearches for wanted Palestinians.

Israeli law bans the military from using human shields.

The Israeli military said the army's procurator-general,Brigadier General Avihai Mandelbit, "has ordered the military police toinvestigate charges that Israeli forces broke the rules and used civiliansduring an operation in Nablus."

An army spokesman would not provide further details on theinvestigation.

B'Tselem said in one incident, Israeli soldiers searchingfor fighters ordered an 11-year-old Palestinian girl to lead them into a house.

Jihan Daadush said the soldiers threatened to arrest her unless she led them toa nearby house.

"Three soldiers walked behind me. When we reached thehouse, there were a lot of soldiers. The soldiers ordered me to go insidethe house and I went inside."

Told to keep quiet

B'Tselem said Jihan told them the soldiers asked about therooms of the house, then two of them returned her to her home. Thereport did not say whether troops found any fighters inside.

The girl was told to not to tell anyone about the incident: "Iwas afraid they would kill me or put me in jail. I am still afraid the soldierswill invade the city again and take me away," she said.

Television footage also showed Israeli soldiers apparently forcing a youngPalestinian man to walk ahead of them into a house.

B'Tselem said the evidence it had collected showed the the 'human shields' weregiven tasks that "undoubtedly included an element of danger and it seemsclear that the soldiers were aware of this".

In 2005 Israel'ssupreme court banned the practice of using Palestinian civilians as humanshields to search homes for explosives or fighters in advance of soldiers.

The Israeli army ended a five-day raid into Nablus on March 1.

During the incursion, troops shot dead a 42-year-oldPalestinian civilian watching the raid from his rooftop.

Soldiers also detained 11 suspected fighters and claimedthey had uncovered workshops used to manufacture explosive devices and bombbelts.

Source: Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16
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