Ofer - Assault of soldier/policeman, Interrogation of Witness
Translation: Marganit W.
The defense hearing in the case of Arij Hushiya – the farce continues.
Judge: Lieut. Col. Sebastian Osovsky.
Atty. Fadi Qawasmeh summoned Arij to the witness stand. At this point her mother was ushered out of the court because she was scheduled to testify later.
On 27.12.17 Arij, her mother, her grandmother and her younger sister with Down Syndrome arrived at the checkpoint. They had permits to enter Jerusalem for a scheduled appointment at Mukasad Hospital for the sister. The girl ran away, a commotion ensued and Arij was taken to be interrogated.
In earlier hearings it transpired that during the interrogation, Arij was stripped of her clothes in front of a male soldier and a male guard. At that point, apparently, Arij threatened to kill them – taking a hair pin from her headgear.
Arij’s testimony took a long time – from the moment she admitted that she did not have a permit and that her mother pushed her to the line. A female soldier pulled her aside and she was asked why she wanted to go to Jerusalem. She explained that she was accompanying her sister who is very attached to her to a hospital appointment. Then the frisking began.
Arij admitted that she said certain things that she did not mean, but it was the strip search that provoked it.
Atty. Qawasmeh presented a copy of the summons to Mukassad Hospital.
Here is a sample of the prosecutor’s many questions:
“On the day of arrest, did you carry money?” Arij said she had 40 shekels on her when she left the home.
The prosecutor claimed that Arij planned to buy a knife with that money, and use it to attack Jews once she entered Jerusalem. She then claimed that Arij, when she prayed, had asked to be a “Shahid” [martyr], something Arij vehemently denied.
Thus the examination continued with petty insistence on every word Arij had uttered at the time of the incident. It did not help that she kept saying,” I spoke nonsense. I was upset and nervous because I was made to strip in front of men.”
The next hearing is set for 29.8.18.