Imprisoned Palestinian feminist, leftist political leader and advocate for prisoners’ rights Khalida Jarrar issued a statement on International Women’s Day from HaSharon prison, where she is held without charge or trial under administrative detention as one of 60 Palestinian women political prisoners. The statement was published on Mondoweiss from her daughter Yafa Jarrar’s Facebook page.

Jarrar has been detained by Israeli occupation forces since July 2017, when her Ramallah-area home was attacked in a pre-dawn raid.  A prominent Palestinian leftist and feminist, Jarrar is a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, head of its Prisoners’ Committee and Vice-Chair of the Board of Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association. She was previously imprisoned in a case that drew worldwide attention in 2015; first ordered to administrative detention, her case was then transferred to an Israeli military court and she was accused of “incitement” for her public political activity in support of Palestine and Palestinian political prisoners.

The statement, with Yafa Jarrar’s comments, follows:

“Salute to all Palestinian women and women of the world. On this International Women’s Day, I affirm the importance of solidarity among women in their national and social struggles against colonization, discrimination, and social & economic exploitation. March 8th is an opportunity for us to unite in the fight for justice.”- Affidavit to Addameer Attorney at HaSharon Prison on 6 March 2018 with Palestinian Legislative Council member Khalida Jarrar.

This is the third time that my mother celebrates International Women’s Day in Israel’s Apartheid prisons. Mom was first arrested at an International Women’s Day rally in 1989 when I was only 3-yrs old. On March 8th, 2016, mom was serving a 15-month arbitrary sentence for being a feminist, parliamentarian, and political leader. Today, mom celebrates International Women’s Day along with 62 women and girls in Israeli prisons.

Mom’s role inside prison is critical. She is a mentor and an educator to 8 minor detainees, who are deprived of their right to education in a direct violation of international laws. Mom is preparing these young women to write their official high school exams from inside prison.

On this day in 2016, mom sent the following statement from the same prison that she is now detained at without charges or trial:

“On this day, we affirm that as Palestinian prisoners, we are part of a larger struggle for women’s liberation. The struggle will continue until we gain our freedom from occupation, and our freedom as women from all forms of injustices, oppression, violence, and discrimination. On this day, Palestinian women mark this occasion in light of the crimes of the occupation against Palestinian women, children, elders, and youth. This year, and from inside prison, we call for the freedom and self-determination of our people and of Palestinian women. We emphasize that in order to achieve equality and liberation, all forms of oppression and injustices must end. We stand as part of a global struggle with all other women freedom fighters around the world who are fighting against injustice, exploitation, and oppression.”