Amnesty International condemned on Wednesday, 30 August 2023 Israeli occupation “punitive” demolition of a Palestinian child detainee’s home.
In a report issued on Friday, Amnesty stated that the Israeli occupation Supreme Court had approved “the punitive demolition of the family home of a 13-year-old Palestinian boy who has spent the past six months in pre-trial detention on unfair charges”, stressing he is being punished for a fault he did not commit.
“In February 2023, Mohammed Zalabani stabbed an Israeli border police officer on a bus at a checkpoint in the Shu’afat refugee camp in occupied East Jerusalem. He was overpowered, but moments later a private Israeli security guard accidentally shot the officer dead.”
The autopsy proved that the Israeli officer was not killed by the Palestinian child, who was charged with his murder, and is now awaiting trial in a juvenile facility, Amnesty added.
In response, the Israeli military approved “the punitive demolition of the third-floor apartment in Shu’afat where Mohammed Zalabani’s parents and three siblings – one of whom is just a toddler – live.”
Israeli human rights organization HaMoked filed a petition against the order, but the Supreme Court rejected it, Amnesty noted.Demolishing the homes of Palestinians for allegedly carrying out attacks on Israelis is a long-held practice of the Israeli regime. Thousands of Palestinians have lost their homes to demolitions in what human rights groups say is a policy by the Israeli occupation of collective punishment that may amount to war crimes. “International humanitarian law, including the Hague Regulations of 1907 and the Fourth Geneva Convention, prohibits collective punishment, including deliberately harming the relatives of those accused of committing crimes, in all circumstances,” Human Rights Watch said in February. “Courts around the world have treated collective punishment as a war crime,” the rights group said. Since the beginning of 2023, Israeli occupation forces demolished 673 Palestinian homes, displacing 14,260 Palestinians including women and children, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).