Following B'Tselem's intervention, Military Police to investigate eight recent cases of soldiers abusing Palestinians

13 Sep 2006

The Military Police will investigate eight cases in which Palestinians complained that soldiers beat and abused them. The decision was conveyed by an attorney from the Central Command to B'Tselem, which had documented the incidents and sent them to the Judge Advocate General's Office with a demand for investigations.

Testimonies given to B'Tselem in recent weeks portray a grave picture of violence against Palestinians by soldiers in the northern West Bank, particularly in the area between Nablus and Tulkarm. In most of the cases, which took place in July and August, soldiers attacked Palestinians who tried to move from one community to another in the West Bank without going through military checkpoints. According to the testimonies, the soldiers beat, swore at, and degraded the Palestinians and damaged their property. Some of the victims subsequently required hospitalization.

B'Tselem welcomes the rapid decision to open these investigations, and will do what it can to assist the Military Police to obtain all necessary information. A timely investigation is essential to ensuring that it succeeds in establishing the facts. In addition, the decision to investigate these cases sends an important message to soldiers serving in the Occupied Territories : Palestinian lives and property must be respected, and persons responsible for harming them will be held accountable.