Lina Khattab, 18-year-old Palestinian first year media student at Bir Zeit University and folkloric dancer, will face her next military court hearing at Ofer prison on 16 February 2015. Khattab was arrested by the Israeli military on 13 December 2014 at a student demonstration in support of Palestinian political prisoners held in Ofer prison; she was charged with “throwing stones” and “participating in an unlawful demonstration,” frequent and arbitrary charges leveled at Palestinians who participate in or are near popular demonstrations against the Israeli occupation. Click here to take action – demand the immediate release of Lina Khattab!
Her court hearing on 25 January – her seventh appearance in military court since her arrest – was closed to observers and the public. Her hearing on 16 February will be open to observers, reported Palestinian activist Mariam Barghouthi, who reported previously on Lina’s experience and that of her family at a postponed hearing.
Lina is one of many Palestinian students targeted annually by Israeli military forces; Palestinian university campuses and students’ homes have been raided, while many student blocs involved in student union elections have been treated as “hostile organizations” by the Israeli military – meaning that students can be prosecuted and imprisoned for their involvement in Palestinian student unions and other student organizing activities.
Lina reported through her lawyer that she had been abused and beaten by Israeli soldiers during her detention, and one of the soldiers hit her, ripped her clothes and shouted obscene insults at her.
The Progressive Democratic Student Pole at Bir Zeit University has organized several marches and rallies calling for Lina’s freedom; on 5 February, the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees held support and protest gatherings at Lina’s family home as well as the family home of Malaak al-Khatib, the 14-year-old Palestinian girl sentenced to 2 months imprisonment.
The Union saluted the families of Lina and Malaak, symbols of steadfastness and struggle, and called for international action to free Palestinian prisoners and the immediate release of Lina and Malaak. Click here to take action – demand the immediate release of Lina Khattab!
Take action – demand the release of Lina Khattab!
1. Take action to demand the immediate release of Lina Khattab. Sign the letter here and send it to Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Netanyahu.
2. Take action for Palestinian prisoners: protest at an Israeli consulate or embassy, or hold an educational event Palestinian prisoners. Demand the freedom of Lina Khattab and Palestinian political prisoners.
3. Join the movement for boycott, divestment and sanctions. Isolate Israel for its mass political imprisonment of Palestinians. Boycott products like HP and SodaStream, and demand an end to security contracts with G4S, which provides the security system at HaSharon that imprisons Lina and other Palestinian women. Learn more at bdsmovement.net.