13 Palestinian minor girls imprisoned by Israeli occupation

iman-abusbeihFollowing Israeli occupation forces’ arrest of Iman Abu Sbeih, 17, on 10 October, there are currently 13 minor girls imprisoned in Israeli jails among a total of 60 Palestinian women political prisoners.

Iman was arrested in a series of raids and attacks by occupation forces on her family home, including the arrest of her brothers and uncle, amid arrests of over 39 people in Jerusalem. Her father, Mesbah Abu Sbeih, was slain by occupation forces on Sunday, 9 October after shooting two Israelis, including a member of the occupation police in Jerusalem, rather than turning himself in for four months’ imprisonment in Israeli jails. Abu Sbeih had been repeatedly arrested and detained as well as prohibited from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque. Iman’s detention was extended until Thursday, 13 October by an occupation court. She is being accused of “incitement” for giving an interview about her pride in her father.

The 13 Palestinian minor girls in Israeli prison are:

  • Manar Shweiki of Jerusalem, imprisoned since 7 December 2015
  • Lama Bakri of Jerusalem, detained since 13 December 2015
  • Nouran Awad of Jerusalem, detained since 23 November 2015
  • Marah Bakir of Jerusalem, detained since 12 October 2015
  • Malak Salman of Jerusalem, detained since 9 February 2016
  • Iman Abu Sbeih of Jerusalem, detained since 10 October 2016
  • Natalie Shokha of Ramallah, detained since 29 April 2016
  • Tasnim Khayat of Ramallah, detained since 29 April 2016
  • Istabraq Noor of Nablus, detained since 19 October 2015
  • Sajida Hasan of Nablus, detained since 21 February 2016
  • Amal Kabha of Jenin, detained since 14 August 2016
  • Heba Areinat of Jericho, detained since 3 March 2016
  • Jamila Jaber of Salfit, detained since 7 May 2016

The minor girls are imprisoned in HaSharon prison, as noted in the letter from Natalie Shokha to her family. Recently released prisoner Dunia Waked noted that the girls are often separated from the adult women prisoners, preventing them from caring for them when they are upset or need support. Women prisoners are held in HaSharon and Damon prison; the elected representative of the women prisoners in HaSharon prison is Lena Jarbouni, the longest-serving woman prisoner in Israeli jails.

amira-hmedatThe Ofer military court continued the military trial of Amira Ahmed Hmeidat, 45, of Surif near al-Khalil, until 21 October, for the seventh time. She has been imprisoned since 18 November 2015 and has been denied family visits with her son and husband because both are former prisoners. Her son Mahmoud, 26, was released 2 months ago after 4 months in Ofer prison. He is in his final year at Palestine Polytechnic University; his graduation was delayed by multiple years by arrests and imprisonment.

ansam-shawahnehAlso denied family visits was Ansam Shawahneh, 19, a university student at An-Najah University, arrested by Israeli occupation forces on 9 March 2016 and accused of possessing a knife with the intention of stabbing a settler. Shawahneh’s mother was allowed to visit her, but her father, Abdel Nasser Shawahneh, was returned from a military checkpoint after being detained for six hours. Shawahneh had been denied any family visits since her arrest seven months ago; she will come before the military court again on 8 November.

Over 10,000 Palestinian women have been detained since 1967 and many more since 1948.