Affidavit No. 5001/2009

Sworn Statement

After having been warned to tell the truth and nothing but the truth or else I shall be subjected to penal action, I, the undersigned, Jamil Hani Jamil Abu-Heikal, of Palestinian nationality, holder of ID No. 85459633, born on 7 June 1993, a student, and a resident of Tal al-Rumeida neighbourhood, Hebron city, Hebron governorate, would like to declare the following:

I live with my family in the neighbourhood of Tal al-Rumeida in the old city of Hebron. Our house is located northeast of a settlement and camp of the Israeli Army. I am a student in grade 11.

At around 4:30 pm on Monday, 13 July 2009, I accompanied two workers to fetch some tools. The workers were supposed to restore and renovate our house the following day. I met with the workers on an olive grove that is approximately 150 metres east of my house. The grove is also near a spring, which Palestinians call ¡°al-Jadida Spring¡± and Israelis call ¡°Abraham.s Spring¡±. Sometimes, Israeli settlers swim in this spring.

When I met with the workers, I saw four soldiers positioned on top of a pile of rubble, which was approximately four metres away from us. A soldier called out and ordered us to stop. He told us to leave the wheelbarrow, in which we were transporting tools, and to come and see him. The soldier ordered each of us to stand at a distance of two metres away from the other. Then, he called us, one after another, requesting our ID cards. When I approached, I gave him my ID card. Later, the soldiers ordered us to sit on the cactus nearby, but I refused. Another soldier kicked me with his foot, punched me on the neck, and pushed me against an olive tree. He was of medium height, thin, of white complexion with blue eyes, and looked to be about 20 years of age.

The first soldier returned the workers. ID cards and ordered them to leave. They walked towards my house. During that time, I took out my mobile telephone and dialled my father.s number to report the incident to him. The soldier who had stopped us approached me and took my mobile telephone. He removed the battery and chip, threw them towards me, and kept the telephone with him. I demanded that he return my mobile telephone.
¡°You want to steal it!¡± I shouted.

At that point, a soldier, who I believe was the patrol officer, took the mobile telephone from the soldier and threw it at me, hitting me in the head. (Three insignias in the form of seven were on the officer.s shoulders.)
Several minutes later, my mother and my cousin Wisam al-Nather (about 19-years-old) arrived. I realised that the workers had told them that soldiers had detained me. My mother asked why the soldiers were detaining me.
¡°Shut up or I will screw you!¡± the first soldier (who had stopped me) told me, before I could say a word.

My mother asked the soldiers to release me. However, the patrol officer said I was a troublemaker. My mother continued to request that soldiers release me, but to no avail. Five minutes later, two soldiers took me to the settlement outpost near my house. The other two soldiers prevented my mother and cousin from accompanying me. While I was entering the settlement outpost, a settler spoke to the soldiers. I understood that he objected to my presence at the settlement outpost because I was an Arab. A soldier replied that I was being detained.

¡°Bitch!¡± the settler said, cursing me.
The two soldiers led me to the entrance of the military post inside the settlement outpost. They forced me to sit behind a large cement block. A soldier stood near me. At a distance of five metres, I saw my father and .Isa .Amr, a local employee at B.Tselem Human Rights Centre, approaching the gate that separated my house from the settlement outpost. Soldiers stopped them and prevented them from accessing the gate. My father and .Isa tried to take photographs of me while I was detained, but soldiers prevented them from doing so.

During that time, settlers gathered around, cursing and threatening me. Some settlers kicked me with their feet. The two soldiers who had prevented my mother and cousin from accompanying me arrived. In addition, approximately 40 soldiers came out of the military post and gathered around me. None of the soldiers attempted to keep the settlers from assaulting me.

Twenty minutes later, a soldier blindfolded me and tied my hands behind my back. He also ordered me to sit on my knees. During that time, I heard my father and .Isa .Amr quarrelling with the soldiers and settlers. Soldiers and settlers then beat me and I fell unconscious for several minutes. Later, I came around and vomited. I woke up when I heard the voice of my aunt Hana. (about 51 years). She was talking to me and trying to calm me down, and she was speaking to the soldiers. My aunt told me that an officer had come out of the military post and ordered the soldiers to remove my blindfolds and handcuffs and release me. My aunt and my mother, who were allowed to access the place where I was detained, helped me return to my house. Both my father and the B.Tselem employee also came back to the house. It was 5:45 pm then. I was exhausted and felt pains in my back, legs, neck and head.

My father and the B.Tselem employee took me to the Hebron Governmental Hospital (.Alia). We walked to the military checkpoint, which was set up 400 metres east of my house, and hired a taxi to transport us to the hospital. According to the diagnosis, I had contusions on various parts of my body. My right leg was also wounded. A doctor sprayed my contusions with a pain relieving spray.

At 8:30 pm, I went to the Israeli police station near the settlement of Kiryat Arba. in order to file a complaint. However, police officers refused to receive us and requested that we return at 9:00 am on the next day. The next day, my father and I returned to the police station. Officers took down our statements. My father also presented two videotapes documenting parts of the detention incident.

This is my declaration and hereby I sign, 15 July 2009.
Signature: Jamil Abu-Heikal
Name not withheld
Field researcher: Hisham Sharabati
I, the undersigned, Hani Jamil Abu-Heikal, hereby certify that my son Jamil has made to the above statement to the al-HAQ and signed it before me.

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 5001/2009
  • Field researcher: Hisham Sharabati
  • Affidavit Date: 15 July 2009
  • Name: Jamil Hani Jamil Abu-Heikal
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