Occupation routine in Hebron: Two minors were arrested as one had a pocketknife. He was held for four days, 22 Nov. 2020
On Sunday, 22 November 2020, at around 6:00 P.M., two Palestinian friends, M.Q. (16) and A.R. (17), were on their way home after visiting a friend in the old city of Hebron. The two intended to pass through the Pharmacy Checkpoint, but when they got there, they saw a long line and police officers conducting thorough inspections. M.Q., who was carrying a pocketknife, preferred to avoid the inspection. The two kept walking and crossed through a breach in a fence to get to their homes at the other end of the neighborhood.
When they passed by the Bakery Checkpoint – another of the 21 checkpoints the military installed in central Hebron – the two police officers manning it ordered them to come over. The teens obeyed. The officers then ordered them to lift up their shirts, causing the pocketknife M.Q. was carrying, which he had tucked into his pants, to fall into the pants. Fearing the officers would shoot him, M.Q. took out the pocketknife and threw it over to a table at the checkpoint. The pocketknife fell to the ground, at which point the officers ordered the two youths to drop to the ground, aimed their weapons at them and ordered them to take their tops off.
Meanwhile, other officers arrived at the checkpoint. They handcuffed the youths and took them to the police station in Kiryat Arba. After waiting out in the cold in the courtyard for about an hour, although one of them was only wearing a tank top, they were interrogated and accused of an attempted attack.
A.R. was released that day, after his father paid 1,000 shekels (~315 USD) bail. M.Q. was charged with possession of a knife and intent to attack soldiers, and was transferred to the Russian Compound detention facility in Jerusalem.
On Tuesday, 24 November 2020, M.Q. was indicted for “carrying a knife outside the confines of his home.” At a military court hearing held that day, in which M.Q. participated online, the military prosecutor asked to remand him in custody. The judge rejected the request and ordered M.Q.’s release on bail, which later turned into a fine of 1,500 shekels (~470 USD) that his father paid. On Thursday, 26 November, M.Q. was released after four days in detention. On 30 November, he was sentenced to a suspended prison sentence of six months for a period of three years.