Osama Zeidat, 15, released on high bail as injured and ill Palestinian children remain imprisoned

Injured Palestinian child prisoner Osama Zeidat, 15, has been released on bail following his second surgery for his severely injured foot, said Palestinian lawyer Akram Samara of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society.

Samara said that the Ofer military appeals court issued an order to release Osama on 25,000 NIS ($6,000 USD) bail paid by his family. He was shot by Israeli occupation forces in his back and foot on 23 September and seized by them, accused of attempting to attack soldiers or settlers, despite the fact that the only person injured was the boy. He underwent a surgery and was held in Shaare Tzedek hospital for three weeks and was transferred to the Ramle prison clinic before his healing had finished. He has continued to be in severe pain, and he was transferred to military court on a hospital bed; at other times, his hearings were cancelled or postponed because of the lack of an ambulance.

His mother, Lina Mar’i, noted that their joy is incomplete due to the massive bail imposed upon Osama, as well as a condition that his father must bring him to the Israeli occupation military court on demand. She noted that he will continue his treatment in a Palestinian hospital in Ramallah.

Following multiple complaints by his family and Palestinian lawyers, Osama received another surgery on his foot on Sunday, 22 January in Assaf Harofeh hospital.

Meanwhile, injured Palestinian child prisoner Ahmed Issa, 17, was ordered by the Salem military court to remain detained until next Monday, 30 January. Ahmed, from Jenin, is held shackled to his hospital bed in Afula hospital. He was run over by an Israeli military jeep on 3 January.  Ahmed’s fellow child prisoner, Sharif Khanfar, 16,  was injured by the same jeep; he is detained in Assaf Harofeh hospital and his leg was amputated.

In addition, child prisoner Ahmed Kaddour, 16, remains imprisoned despite his multiple illnesses and poor health condition. Ahmed was arrested on 2 January near the Ofer military checkpoint west of Ramallah and accused of throwing stones at occupation soldiers. Ahmed is quite ill and suffers from leukemia and epilepsy as well as injuries to his right hand and leg. His family is demanding his immediate release.

These boys are among over 300 Palestinian children currently jailed by the Israeli occupation.