An Israeli soldier tried to detain a minor during clashes in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh on Friday, but a number of Palestinian women and children managed to stop him.
According to the army, the youth was throwing stones at the troops, who did not realize he was a minor.
Photographs taken by Reuters and AFP show the soldier surrounded by women and children. In one of the images, a young girl is seen biting his hand.
The soldier was lightly wounded as a result of the altercation. The commander in the area decided to release the minor. The army said that one other Palestinian was detained in Friday’s clashes, along with one foreign activist.
Activists who were at Friday’s protest said that the soldier used violence against the 12-year-old boy, whose arm was in a cast at the time of the attempted arrest. Jonathan Pollak, one of the activists present, told Haaretz that the boy did not throw stones and that the IDF force, which was in an abandoned building before approaching to detain the boy, could see he was a minor. Pollak, who is employed by Haaretz, saidÂ that the soldier pointed his gun at the boy when he was detaining him.
The Israeli army spokesman responded in a statement that there was “a violent disturbance of the peace in Nabi Saleh, in which Palestinians threw stones at IDF forces that were in the place. The youth who was photographed was identified by the lookout force as a stone-thrower, and because of this it was decided to detain him. At the time of the arrest, a violent provocation by a number of Palestinians developed, including women and children. In light of the violent altercation, the commander decided to not to go ahead with the detention.”