Children and Youth from Beit Ommar Arrested in a Night Raid

3 October 2012

In the last nine days two sons of Ahmed Abu Hashem, a Popular Committee member in Beit Ommar, have been arrested by Israeli occupation forces. Both arrests happened during night raids.

Mohammed Abu Hashem (16) was arrested last week and he is still awaiting his court meeting in Ofer prison outside Ramallah, which has already been postponed two times. Last night Mohammed’s younger brother, Hamza Ahmed Khalil Abu Hashem (14), was arrested by the occupation forces.

On Wednesday 3th of October at 02.30 a.m. a big number of occupation soldiers approached the house of Ahmed Abu Hashem. The soldiers surrounded the family home by dividing into three groups. They had brought a hammer, so they didn’t even care to knock the door. The occupation force broke the door open and entered the house.

The family was ordered outside the house but Hamza’s sister-in-law refused because of her eight months old baby. The occupation soldiers threatened her with beating and therefore she joined the family outside.

Mohammed Abu Hashem

The family’s ID’s were checked and the whole family, except Ahmed and his son Hamza, was ordered inside. A group of soldiers entered the house and destroyed several belongings like chairs, glasses, clothes etc.

Outside the house the soldiers demanded Ahmed to kneel for them. Ahmed did not do so because he refused to be insulted. He was then ordered to stand up against the wall with his face towards the house. Ahmed refused to do this as well and he answered the occupation force that even all the Israelis in the world would not make him do that.

Suddenly three soldiers forced Hamza up against the wall. They searched his clothes and body, hand cuffed and blindfolded him. While a group of soldiers were shooting sound bombs Hamza was taken away from his family. A third group of soldiers attacked the family home with tear gas, sound bombs and rubber bullets. The occupation force also used an unknown weapon which started a fire and left black, sticky marks. These weapons were used both outside and inside their house.

Hamza Ahmed Khalil Abu Hashem. He was kicked by an occupation soldier during a non-violent demonstration close to the colony of Karmei Tsur 8th of September.

Despite his young age, this is not the first time Hamza was imprisoned. He stayed three days in prison at the age of 11.

Today, Hamza’s father got a call from the occupation forces telling him that his son is kept in Gush Ezion. However, the latest news reported to PSP is that Hamza is now released.

During this night raid two other Beit Ommar residents were also arrested; Sabree Ibrahem Awad (17) and Khaldon Jamil Mashargah (21). This is the first time Khaldon is imprisoned while Sabree has earlier been in prison for 5 ½ month.

Mother of the arrested children, Hamda Abu Hashem, heartbroken.