Israeli forces killed at least 52 Palestinian children in the West Bank and Gaza Strip since Jan. 1, Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P) said Monday.
In a statement released on the occasion of International Children’s Day (Nov. 20), the Geneva-based NGO’s Palestine branch said 48 of the deaths occurred in the blockaded Gaza Strip while the rest had occurred in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
The NGO went on to accuse the Israeli military of using excessive force -- including live ammunition -- against children.
Among the children killed so far this year by Israeli troops, 18 were shot in the head, while another 21 were shot in the chest, neck or abdomen, according to the DCI-P.
The NGO also noted that more than 2,070 Palestinian children had been killed -- either by Israeli troops, security guards or Jewish settlers -- since 2000.
According to the Palestinian Prisoners Society, an estimated 350 Palestinian minors are currently languishing in Israeli detention facilities.