Video: Israeli soldier forces knife on Palestinian girl

A video has emerged apparently showing an Israeli soldier dropping a knife on the ground and forcing a terrified Palestinian girl to pick it up before she is arrested.

The video was circulated widely in Palestinian media and on social networks on Tuesday, the same day that two more Palestinian teenagers were shot dead by Israeli occupation forces, who claimed that the youths had attempted to carry out stabbings.

Israel further escalated violence on Wednesday by carrying out a revenge demolition of a Palestinian home in Jerusalem.

Forced to pick up knife

The Palestinian news outlet Donia Al-Watan said the video was recorded by a Palestinian who witnessed the incident at an Israeli military checkpoint south of Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday.

Several outlets identified the girl in the video as 14-year-old Sabreen Mujahid Sanad.

The 3-minute video appears to have been filmed from a vehicle stopped at the checkpoint. At the beginning, a man in civilian clothes can be seen speaking to the girl next to a white truck. Israeli soldiers are standing nearby and giving orders to others.

The girl is not restrained by the soldiers and walks toward the cab of the white truck. At 1:30, one of the soldiers throws what appears to be a knife onto the ground.

The girl, with her arms raised near her chest, trembles. The soldier then appears to order her to bend down and pick up the knife.

She kneels down and picks it up, and then appears to talk to the soldier as she holds it. As she kneels, a second soldier aims his weapon at her.

A third soldier then approaches and leads her away with her hands behind her back.

As with other similar incidents, the video has fueled widespread suspicions that many of the alleged stabbing attempts in which Palestinians were killed involved the planting of evidence.

Teenagers killed

Mamoun al-Khatib seen with his parents in an image circulated on social media.

On Tuesday morning, Israeli occupation forces shot dead 16-year-old Mamoun Raed al-Khatib near the Gush Etzion bloc of settlements in the occupied West Bank, claiming he tried to stab a man.

No one was injured in the alleged stabbing, but Israeli media reported that a 35-year-old bystander was injured by the Israeli army gunfire that killed Mamoun.

The boy, from Doha village near Bethlehem, was a high schooler in the 10th grade.

Later on Tuesday, Israeli forces shot dead a 19-year-old Palestinian woman at a checkpoint east of Tulkarem in the northern occupied West Bank, Ma’an News Agency reported.

The army claimed the young woman had tried to stab one of its soldiers but none was injured.

A Palestine Red Crescent Society spokesperson said the young woman had no vital signs when medics reached her. Palestinian medics were prevented from removing her body, which was taken away by the Israelis.

Israel continues to withhold the bodies of dozens of Palestinians killed in alleged stabbing attempts.

The Ma’an News Agency said a Palestinian family identified the young woman from photos circulating on social media as their daughter, Maram Ramiz Hassouna, from Nablus. She was a student at An-Najah University.

The family told Ma’an that she had previously spent a year in Israeli prison after she was accused of attempting to stab a soldier at the same checkpoint two years ago.

Israeli forces raided the family’s home on Wednesday.

The body of Maram Ramiz Hassouna lies on the ground at the Israeli checkpoint east of Tulkarem in the occupied West Bank where Israeli forces shot her dead on 1 December.

Nedal Eshtayah APA images

Also on Wednesday, an elderly woman was shot and critically injured in al-Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip. Ma’an News Agency reported that she was shot by Israeli forces who frequently fire at Palestinian protestors across the boundary fence.

“Though clashes between Palestinian youth and Israeli forces have been common in [the] area east of al-Bureij camp, it is unclear whether the woman was shot during such clashes,” Ma’an added.

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed since 1 October, many of them in what human rights organizations and international monitors have condemned as summary executions.

Nineteen Israelis, one Palestinian and one American were slain by Palestinian attackers during the same period, according to The New York Times.

Ambushed and shot in the back

Last week B’Tselem excoriated Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for “the transformation of police officers, and even of armed civilians, into judges and executioners.”

The Israeli rights group also published an investigation into the 13 November killing of Lafi Awad, a 20-year-old community activist in the West Bank village of Budrus.

B’Tselem says Awad had been walking with other youths when a group of Israeli soldiers ambushed him. Awad “tried to free himself from their grip and the soldiers responded violently, kicking him and hitting him with their rifles,” B’Tselem says.

While the soldiers were briefly distracted, firing rubber-coated steel bullets at other Palestinians, Awad managed to free himself.

“Awad took advantage of the opportunity and started to flee, but had gone only a few steps when a soldier shot him in the back,” according to B’Tselem. He collapsed and the soldiers retreated. Awad’s friends carried him away.

B’Tselem concludes that the killing of Lafi Awad closely resembles the ambush and killing of his good friend, 16-year-old Samir Awad, in almost the same spot in January 2013.

Revenge demolition

In addition to summary executions of Palestinians who present no immediate danger, Israel continues to demolish homes belonging to families of Palestinians whom it accuses of attacks.

On Wednesday, a massive group of Israeli occupation forces invaded and locked down Shuafat refugee camp in occupied East Jerusalem.

The home of the family of Ibrahim al-Akkari in Jerusalem’s Shuafat refugee camp, after Israeli occupation forces punitively destroyed it on 2 December.

Mahfouz Abu Turk APA images

The forces demolished a home belonging to the family of Ibrahim al-Akkari, who was shot dead last year after driving his vehicle into pedestrians, killing an Israeli border policeman and injuring 13 other persons, two seriously, at a light rail station in occupied East Jerusalem.

One, a 60-year-old Palestinian, later died of injuries from the collision.

At least 13 Palestinians were shot and injured with rubber-coated steel bullets in confrontations with the Israeli forces who invaded the camp to carry out the demolition, Ma’an News Agency reported. Dozens more sought treatment after inhaling tear gas.

The United Nations and human rights groups say the practice of punitive home demolitions amounts to collective punishment and violates international law.

In November, two Palestinians were killed and dozens were left homeless in a series of Israeli revenge demolitions.

Light sentences for Israeli attackers

Meanwhile, a court in Jerusalem on Tuesday sentenced an Israeli to what Israel’s Ynet termed a “fairly light sentence” for burning down a Jewish-Arab school in Jerusalem.

Yitzhak Gabai, 24, received two years in prison for setting fire to the bilingual Hand in Hand School in November 2014. He received an additional 10 months for possession of a knife.

Because he is Jewish, his family will not suffer retribution in the form of having its home demolished.

Israel does not carry out punitive demolitions of homes belonging to Jews accused or convicted of violent attacks, or their relatives.

When Gabai’s two accomplices, brothers Nahman and Shlomo Twito, were sentenced to similarly light terms last July, they broke out in smiles and sang songs in praise of God, claiming that “it was worth it.”

Prosecutors had sought sentences of at least four to seven years.

The youths were members of Lehava, a government-funded, anti-Palestinian group that campaigns against romantic relationships and marriages between Jewish women and Arab men.

One of the leaders of the extremist group, Bentzi Gopstein, has publicly called for the burning of churches.

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Comments

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They literally did put a knife and forced a girl to pick it up and I'm pretty sure will get away with that. Imagine how many undocumented cases that Palestinians have been shot and Israeli media immediately called them "terrorists" then homes got demolished.

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Back during the Troubles in the North of Ireland, the occupying British troops were forever defending themselves at checkpoints from crazy Fenian assassins who thought it would be a good idea to speed up and try to ram soldiers armed with automatic weapons--or so the Brits said. The Irish seldom presented a different story, I mean, what with being dead and all. iPhones are a blessing.

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There certainly seems to be a unity of tactics among Israeli soldiers and American police. The latter are known for the same practice, planting weapons on those they've shot. There's even a term used by cops themselves- the "throw-down"- to describe a spare weapon carried by officers for this purpose.

Has the Palestinian girl in this video been charged or released? Her manifest terror at the time indicates she fully grasped how close she stood to being murdered. And how does the Israeli government account for the apparent fabrication of a crime, captured on camera? Have the Israeli media given coverage to the incident? What of the international press? We look to the Electronic Intifada for exposure of these outrages, but it would be helpful if, say, the Guardian, the New York Times, or the BBC would occasionally report on such matters. Did I say "helpful"? Perhaps that should have been "astonishing".

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I was sick that the moment her hand (and fingerprints) were on the knife they'd just shoot her for conducting a 'stabbing attack' and the 'proof' to 'justify' it. Is the video supposed to be silent?

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Difficult to watch, no sane person wants to see a child suffer. One can imagine being her father or mother and seeing this child being mistreated this way. The fear of terror in Israel is at an all time high where the religious zealots have taken that country hostage in the same way US has been taken hostage by the Christian right.

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Tom, the Israeli' s brutal suppression of the Palestinian people is not being committed by religious zealots, it's Israeli government Policy. Zionism is a secular movement which dates from the late 1800's, described by the honourable Miko Peled, author of "The General's Son", whose father was an Israeli general describes zionism as a racist, apartheid and genocidal ideology-so true .Religion is used as a pretect as it has been from time immemorial. I really don't understand how anyone could believe that the zionist entity is directed by belief in God

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I would encourage people here to contact the media regarding this troubling video. I've already emailed Washpost, NYtimes, Haaretz, and Al Jazeera, I would encourage people here to email or call until we at least get this video analyzed and someone verifies its authenticity. If Israel is murdering innocent Palestinians just so it can knock their family's houses down, that completely flips the narrative.

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Patrick, there are hundreds of authentic videos proving that the Israeli state is bent on the total annihilation of the Palestinian people, the true natives of Palestine. The fact that you've emailed The WP and the NYT is good but I doubt if it will make any difference because they wont want to incur the wrath of their zionist masters by printing the truth. I should hope that Haaretz and Al Jazeera will already have reported honestly on the subject.

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These kind of tactics or similar tactics are used in North America and in Europe, and they are usually used to intimidate and subjugate certain groups of people.

The Western media outlets these days are constantly repeating the Israeli narrative which says: "The Israeli forces shot and killed a palestinian who tried to stab an Israeli soldier"

Ali Abunimah

Ali Abunimah's picture

Co-founder of The Electronic Intifada and author of The Battle for Justice in Palestine, now out from Haymarket Books.

Also wrote One Country: A Bold-Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse. Opinions are mine alone.