63 teenagers refuse to join Israel army over human rights violations

December 28, 2017

Some 63 Israeli teenagers from across the country are refusing to be enlisted into the army due to the perpetual human rights violations committed by Israeli forces, Yedioth Ahronoth reported yesterday.

In a letter addressed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Israeli army Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot, the twelfth grade students wrote that their decision was motivated by “a commitment to the values of peace”.

The students also criticized the Separation Wall, the blockade on the Gaza Strip and illegal settlements in occupied territories, which they claimed “sever the Palestinians from each other in enclaves and strive to prevent territorial continuity”.

“Therefore we have decided not to take part in the occupation and oppression of the Palestinian nation, which has divided human beings into two antagonistic camps. This ‘temporary’ situation has gone on for 50 long years now, and we won’t contribute to it.”

The high schoolers also highlighted the way in which the Israeli army prevented the truth about arrests from being heard: “The freedom to report and disseminate the information about what goes on is also denied, by journalist detentions and censorship.”

The teenagers also call on other high school students to join them in their boycott and refusal to join the army until the occupation of the West Bank is ended. They plan to take to the streets to further their call and gain more support.

Twenty-year-old Matan Helman, who is among the signatories, is currently serving jail time after his refusal to be drafted into the army.

Earlier this month, the Israeli army and the education ministry announced that they were working on a plan to boost enrollment, after enlistment rates fell and the number of dropouts increased.

The subject of conscription is a controversial one in Israel, with no allowance being made for conscientious objectors. In October, Israel jailed Noa Gur Golan for the fourth time, at the end of which she will have served 104 days, for refusing to take part in the occupation.

This year also witnessed ultra-Orthodox Haredi Jews protesting a new law that would see them serve in the army despite their religious beliefs previously excusing them from service.

Source: Middle East Monitor.

Link: https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20171228-63-teenagers-refuse-to-join-israel-army-over-human-rights-violations/.

Advertisements
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: