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      Free All Palestinian Youth from Prison
      Hundreds of Palestinian Youth Political Prisoners in Israel

      By Max Tennant

      On March 7, 2017, Israeli soldiers detained eight Palestinian youth, one of whom is a minor, for protesting the murder of well-known Palestinian activist Basel al-Araj by Israeli forces. This situation is a daily occurrence for Palestinian youth today. There have been over 1,800 youth, including some minors, killed and 8,000 arrested since 2000 by Israeli authorities. As of April 2016, over 694 Palestinian youth, including 414 minors, are in Israeli prisons.

      While in Israeli prisons Palestinian youth face indefinite imprisonment and inhumane and deplorable conditions. Nearly 60% of Palestinian child prisoners are transferred from the West Bank and Gaza to Israeli prisons which, due to restrictions of movement for Palestinians from West Bank and Gaza to Israel, makes visits from parents and families nearly impossible. This is not only against International law, including the Geneva Convention, but it is inhuman and prevents children and their families from visiting while in prison. This horrible situation by itself has created huge concern, stress, and anxiety among these children and their families. The inhumane condition in prisons, as well as the physical and psychological torture, has been the subject of much criticism and protest by international human rights organizations and institutions, including the United Nations and many Israeli progressive and human rights organizations.

      The Palestinian population is very young. 70% of the Palestinian population is under the age of 30 and 30% of Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza are between the ages of 15-29. Youth are the vanguard of the Palestinian struggle against Israeli colonial occupation. The fight of Palestinian youth for the self-determination and sovereignty of Palestine has been consistent since the occupation of Palestine in 1948. Young people and the children of Palestine, generation after generation, are fighting for Palestinian liberation. They have been the vanguard of this movement and their heroic struggle against oppression and occupation has set an example for all other liberation movements around the world. Palestinian youth, regardless of difficult living conditions and an insufficient education and health care system in Gaza and West Bank, have continued to advance in many fields of art and science. At the same time their heroic struggle and sacrifice has shown there is no chance for Israel to win. Their presence for decades on the streets of Palestine and Israel for the liberation of Palestine from the occupation of Israeli Zionist regime is a good proof that Palestinians can win and a new world without oppression and suppression is possible.

      Free All Palestinian Youth Prisoners!
      Free All Palestinian Political Prisoners in Israel!

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