HC Deb 06 April 1939 vol 345 cc3024-5W
Sir E. Bennett

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he can now inform the House of the results of his inquiry into the case of the Arab boy of 13 who, on 25th March, was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment and 18 lashes with a whip?

Mr. M. MacDonald

Yes, Sir. The High Commissioner has informed me that this Arab boy was found guilty by the Military Court at Jerusalem on 24th March of shooting a Jew. No doubt his intent was to kill, but fortunately he only succeeding in wounding his victim. He was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment and 18 strokes by whipping. Such whipping is inflicted with a light rod, or cane or birch. On 29th March the General Officer Commanding confirmed the sentence, but reduced the strokes to 12 and directed that the sentence of imprisonment should be served in a reformatory.

The power of confirmation rests solely with the General Officer Commanding, and I am not in a position to intervene, but I should like to explain to the House that I am informed that the present policy of the terrorist organisation in Palestine is to encourage youths under 18 who, if caught, cannot be sentenced to death, to carry lethal weapons with intent to kill.

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