May 22, 2022 06:31 UTC
  • Defense for Children: Israeli forces used 16-yr-old Palestinian girl as human shield in raid on Jenin

Israeli forces have used a female Palestinian teenage girl to shield themselves from incoming bullets during a last week raid in the northern part of the occupied West Bank city of Jenin, an international children rights organization says.

Defense for Children International (DCI) recounted the development involving Ahed Mohammad Rida Mereb, 16, in gruesome detail, Palestinian Wafa news agency reported on Saturday, citing a Wednesday report by the rights organization.

According to the organization's Palestine offshoot (DCIP), the incident happened when the forces raided Ahed’s house in the city of Jenin to arrest her 20-year-old brother.

Israeli forces besieged Ahed’s home around 06:00 a.m. local time on May 13 in order to arrest her 20-year-old brother, according to documentation collected by DCIP. Israeli forces ordered Ahed, her parents, and her two younger brothers to leave the house and to move to a yard across the street. The forces exchanged fire with Ahed’s older brother, who remained in the house. Around 08:00 a.m. local time, an Israeli military vehicle came under gunfire, which is when Israeli forces ordered Ahed to stand outside the military vehicle.

“Bullets were being fired at the military vehicle from all directions,” Ahed told DCIP.

“I was trembling and crying and shouting to the soldiers to remove me because the bullets were passing over my head, but one of them ordered me in Arabic through a small window in the military vehicle, ‘Stay where you are and don’t move. You’re a terrorist. Stand in your place until you say goodbye to your brother.”

The Israeli forces would not even let Ahed tilt her head to dodge the bullets, but one of the Israeli soldiers ordered her to stand up straight, she added.

After several hours, the Palestinian girl finally managed to run to a nearby tree, where she dropped unconscious to the ground.