MIDDLE EAST

In 2017, Israel detained or arrested over 6000 Palestinians including more than 1400 children

IN 2017, ISRAEL DETAINED OR ARRESTED OVER 6000 PALESTINIANS INCLUDING MORE THAN 1400 CHILDREN

Israeli army detained 6,742 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank in 2017, according to data released by Palestinian organizations on Sunday.

In a joint statement, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)-linked Palestinian Committee of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs, Palestinian Prisoners Committee, Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights said the detentions in 2017 included 1,467 children, 156 women, 14 Palestinian Legislative Council members and 25 journalists.

The statement also said some of the detainees were later released.

As of Sunday, there are 6,950 Palestinian prisoners, including 359 children, 22 journalists and 10 MPs, in Israeli prisons, it added.

There are also 450 prisoners who are under "administrative detention".

Under the policy of administrative detentions, prisoners can be held without trial for periods ranging from six months to a year.

Israeli forces frequently raid Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank and detain local Palestinians, claiming they are "wanted" by Israeli security agencies.

The statement also said 2,436 Palestinians, one third of whom are children, have been arrested in occupied Jerusalem.

Tension has mounted in the Palestinian territories since Dec. 6, when U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, sparking demonstrations in the West Bank and Gaza.

Since then, at least 14 Palestinians have been killed -- and thousands more injured -- in fierce clashes with Israeli security forces.

Jerusalem remains at the core of the Middle East conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem -- illegally occupied by Israel since 1967 -- might eventually serve as the capital of a Palestinian state.

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