Press Release 11 November 2012

UK Media fails to report the abuse of Palestinian children at the hands of the Israeli Occupation Forces.

With the UK media currently indulged in a positive frenzy around the issue of abuse of children and young people, Scottish Friends of Palestine can only express its amazement at the lack of interest shown by the same media at the abuse of children and young people at the hands of the Israeli military. The one notable and honourable exception to this being Govan Radio. Is it that the children abused are only Palestinian or is it that the 300 case studies carried out by Defence for Children International are largely devoid of sexual content?

At Saturday’s seminar “Children in Chains” the abuse of Palestinian children was clinically outlined – children and parents wakened up at 4 in the morning with guns and dogs, inches from their head.

For the children, their hands are painfully bound by plastic “cuffs”, flung into the bottom of a military jeep with the prospect of being “softened” by further abuse, solitary confinement, shackles, confessions in Hebrew – a language they don’t understand. Exposed to a judicial system only interested in confessions, not the truth, with judges who do not even ask questions.

For the parent, their child is forcibly removed to an unknown destination. They are humiliated and shown to be helpless in the face of heavily armed and willing conscripted youths. They cannot protect their own children.

The outcome. When this happens in a small village, particularly those where the residents defy the occupying army, it does not just happen once. Two or three days per week, week after week. Each time a child is removed.

The consequences. Social disintegration. Psychologically emasculated parents with the mother described as undergoing “psychotic death” as she continues to care for the remainder of her family.

And don’t forget – all this is carried out at the hands of the state of Israel, a great friend of the UK and her fellow travellers in the European Union where criticism is muted and action totally absent.

It is not too late for the media to revive and exercise its latent investigative talents. Contact the Chair of SFoP, Arthur West at

Hugh Humphries


Scottish Friends of Palestine

Scottish Friends of Palestine was formed in 1982 in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and the subsequent attacks on the Palestinian refugee communities. SFoP campaigns for immediate and unconditional Israeli withdrawal from all territories illegally occupied, including East Jerusalem. We work for educational, social and cultural links between the Scottish and Palestinian peoples. We argue for the right of the return, the right to restitution and compensation for the Palestinian people.

Scottish Friends of Palestine is a firm advocate of the total boycott of all Israeli institutions, academic and cultural bodies and Israeli products – until as such times that the Israeli state ceases to boycott the rights of the Palestinian people, and international law as it applies to the Palestinian people. Visit to find out what you can do.


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