Resource: Palestinian Children

Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act, H.R. 2407

On April 30, 2019, Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) introduced H.R. 2407, the "Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act," prohibiting U.S. taxpayer funding for the military detention of children by any country, including Israel.

The bill amends Section 620M of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2378d) commonly known as the ‘‘Leahy Law’’ by adding a new subsection that includes a generally applicable limitation prohibiting U.S. military aid from being used by foreign armed forces to support the military detention, interrogation, abuse, or ill-treatment of children in violation of international humanitarian law. 

In addition, the bill also establishes the “Human Rights Monitoring and Palestinian Child Victims of Israeli Military Detention Fund,” authorizing $19 million annually for non-governmental organization (NGO) monitoring of human rights abuses associated with Israel’s military detention of children. The Fund also authorizes qualified NGOs to provide physical, psychological, and emotional treatment and support for Palestinian child victims of Israeli military detention, abuse, and torture.

NO WAY TO TREAT A CHILD: Palestinian child detainees in Israeli military detention

  • Israel is the only nation that systematically prosecutes children in military courts that lack fundamental fair trial rights and protections. 
  • 10,000 Palestinian children have been arrested, detained, abused, and prosecuted by Israeli security forces in the Israeli military court system since 2000.
    • An estimated 500 to 700 children are prosecuted annually.
  • Nearly three out of four Palestinian children experience some form of physical violence after arrest.
  • Children typically arrive to interrogation bound, blindfolded, frightened, and sleep deprived.
  • Children often give confessions after verbal abuse, threats, and physical and psychological violence that in some cases amounts to torture. 
  • Israeli military law provides no right to legal counsel during interrogation.
  • Regardless of guilt or innocence, children in conflict with the law are entitled to special protections and all due process rights under international law, including an absolute prohibition on torture and other forms of ill-treatment.

H.R.2407 has broad- based support including faith communities, human rights, and peace and justice organizations. A partial list of supporters includes:  American Friends Service Committee, Amnesty International USA, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Friends Committee on National Legislation, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America., Institute for Policy Studies, Jewish Voice for Peace, Presbyterian Church (USA), the Episcopal Church, United Church of Christ, United Methodist General Board of Church and Society and US Campaign for Palestinian Rights

Our Asks:

Minnesota Peace Project asks members of our Congressional delegation to support H.R. 2407, join Rep. McCollum as a co-sponsor and encourage other house members to do the same.

Currently there is no companion Senate bill. We invite Senators Klobuchar and Smith to introduce a Senate version and seek out other Senators to support it.



Download a printable pdf here Palestinian Children HR 2407 2020

PDF icon Palestinian Children

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