When a child misses sleep

On the occasion of Palestinian Children's Day, the released prisoner, Ahmed Sarari, who was arrested in November 2017 at the age of sixteen speaks about his suffering.

Jerusalem24 – Hala Al-Zuhairi – Since the year 2000, the Israeli occupation authorities have arrested more than 16,000 Palestinian minors under the age of 18 years. More than (85)% of these have been subjected to one or more forms of torture or physical and psychological abuse by the Israeli occupation forces and investigators, according to a statement of The Prisoners and Executives Affairs Authority on the occasion of the Palestinian Children’s Day.

Among them; The released prisoner, Ahmed Sarari, who was arrested in November 2017 at the age of sixteen.

Sarari told Jerusalem24 that he was thrown to the ground and was severely beaten during his arrest, and during the two-day interrogation period, he was left for long hours in an outdoor yard freezing without any food or drink.

“It was very cold,” Sarari said. “I was cold, beaten and yelled at by the interrogators.”

Between Ofer and Damon

Sarari spent most of his detention in Ofer prison, West of Ramallah, he and his fellow prisoners succeeded in creating an atmosphere in which they coexisted with prison conditions, the warden’s cruelty, and sudden inspection raids in the dawn hours, preventing them from sleeping.

In the last months of his sentence, the occupation authorities transferred him with the rest of the young prisoners to Damon prison, which is located in the ‘Carmel’ woods in Haifa.

Damon is a very old prison built during the British Mandate, cold and dirty, lacking the basic necessities of life.

Sarari says that his mother used to arrive in Damon at the time of the visit, very tired, and once his father lost consciousness from pressure and fatigue.

Despite all these harsh conditions for a child of his age, Ahmed considers that the transfer from Ofer to Damon was more difficult than his actual presence in both prisons.

The process of transporting him took a full 24 hours in the “bosta” car, which he spent sitting and tied to an iron chair, and for a whole day, he was prohibited from eating or using the bathroom.

“I missed eating ‘Maklobeh’ and sleeping peacfully”

Sarari was in the training phase to obtain a certificate after joining the Qalandia Institute for Vocational Training, but the period of detention made him change his orientation to another job.

He also missed many other events; including the marriage of his cousin, and trips with his friends, he felt upset when he knew about it.

Many things have changed in Ahmed’s life and personality after this experience, but he returns a child when he describes the moment he met his mother when he was released, saying “I met her with tears.”

And when I asked him about the things that he missed, he replied: I missed food, my mom’s ‘Maklobeh’, and I missed sleeping … sleeping peacefully without anyone waking me up, I said to my family, “Let me sleep!”

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