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Israeli forces arrested 570 Palestinian minors in first half of 2023: Rights group

This file photo shows Israeli forces arresting a Palestinian minor in the occupied West Bank.

A new report released by a Palestinian rights advocacy group says Israeli forces have arrested as many as 570 Palestinian minors since the beginning of 2023.

The director of Palestine Center for Prisoners' Studies (PCPS), Riyad al-Ashqar, offered the information in remarks carried by the Palestinian Information Center on Sunday.

The figure shows an increase of 15 percent compared to the same period last year, he noted, saying that 435 of Palestinian youngsters detained by Israeli forces hailed from the occupied city of al-Quds.

The detainees included 29 children under the age of 12, al-Ashqar said, adding that two of them are just 10 years old.

"Dozens of children were put under house arrest following their release in the first half of 2023," the Palestinian official noted.

He added that 23 Palestinian minors were arrested under the occupying regime's inhumane administrative detention policy, which allows Israeli forces to incarcerate Palestinians for indefinite periods of time without any charges or trial.

Back in May, Palestinian Prisoners' Club (PPC), which is an independent nongovernmental organization, reported that Israeli forces had detained a whopping 3,000 Palestinians since the start of the year.

Reporting in January, the PCPS said Israeli forces had arrested a total of 7,000 Palestinians, including hundreds of women and children, last year.

"Israel arrested 865 Palestinian children, including 142 under the age of 12, in 2022," al-Ashqar said at the time, adding that some of those children had not even reached nine years of age, and all detainees had been subjected to abuse, torture or humiliation.

The Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas, said in early June that the international community needs to intervene to end Israel’s violations against Palestinian children.

In its statement, which was issued on the occasion of the International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression, Hamas said the regime denies ill children treatment, medicine and food supply by keeping the Gaza Strip blockaded.

In the occupied West Bank, Hamas added, Israel keeps kidnapping and jailing minors, and in some cases even kills them, places them under house arrest or uses them as human shields.

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