Statement from JfJfP executive committee
June 19, 2014
JfJfP deplores all use of children and young people as political pawns and bargaining chips in international disputes.
We condemn the apparent kidnapping of the Israeli Jewish teenagers, Gilad Shaarh, Naftali Frenkel and Eyal Yifrah. But we also condemn the Israeli government’s exploitation of their disappearance in order to impose an illegal collective punishment on the Palestinian people and to attack Hamas and attempt to wreck the new Palestinian unity government.
The three teenagers went missing in Area C, which is under full Israeli control.
Since the disappearance of the three Israeli Jewish teenagers, Israeli forces have killed one Palestinian, Ahmad Sabarin, aged 20, and have injured nine Palestinians, including an 8 year old boy and a 17 year old boy who was, according to reports, shot in the chest and abdomen with a live bullet, critically wounding him. More than 200 Palestinians have been arrested in the West Bank, including the head of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) and seven other members of the PLC (only one PLC member has been released).
The three Israeli Jewish teenagers disappeared on the 50th day of a hunger strike by more than 125 Palestinian prisoners who are being “administratively detained” without charge and without any judicial process The Israeli government is threatening to force-feed the hunger strikers – a procedure that is condemned by international medical authorities, including the Israeli Medical Association. These Palestinians held in Israeli prisons under so-called “administrative detention” are themselves victims of kidnapping. We condemn this illegal seizure and call for them to be released, just as we condemn the kidnapping of the three Israeli Jewish teenagers and call for their release. But we must point out the danger in which they were deliberately placed by their parents’ choice to live in an illegal West Bank settlement.
If the Israeli government really wants to prevent further attacks on its civilians, including children, we call on it to take the only effective measures: dismantle the illegal Wall and settlements and enter into genuine peace negotiations with the Palestinian unity government.