Ahed Tamimi, the 16-year-old Palestinian teen and youth activist from the village of Nabi Saleh, was ordered imprisoned through the end of her military trial by an Israeli military court on Wednesday, 17 January. Her next hearing was set for 31 January – also her 17th birthday, to be spent behind bars in HaSharon prison.
The detention of Ahed’s mother, Nariman, was also extended until 6 February, the day of her next military court hearing. Despite the fact that both are held in HaSharon prison, Bassem Tamimi – Ahed’s father and Nariman’s husband – reported on Facebook that the mother and daughter have been refused permission to speak with one another in an ongoing attack on their fundamental rights. “There is no justice under occupation and we will continue resisting it,” he said.
In addition, Nariman Tamimi filed a complaint in the military court about the ongoing abusive and physically damaging experience of the “bosta,” an issue that has been raised for years by Palestinian women prisoners and was even part of the demands of the collective Karameh hunger strike. The “bosta” is a metal box van that is tightly sealed and is extremely cold in winter and hot in summer. Nariman and Ahed are always transported separately and they are placed with Israeli criminal prisoners who frequently subject them and other Palestinian political prisoners to racist abuse and threats. The “bosta” transfer process also includes lengthy waits on multiple stops and strip-searches. Nariman Tamimi has reported breathing problems due to asthma and stomach problems, both seriously exacerbated by the “bosta” process.
31 January, the day of Ahed’s next military court hearing, will also mark her 17th birthday. On that day, Ahed and her mother will be forcibly separated while both behind bars. There are currently approximately 360 Palestinian children in Israeli jails, and each year approximately 700 are brought before Israeli military courts. These children are kept from their families, deprived of their educational rights and subject to clear and systematic violations of the Rights of the Child.
Ahed, Nariman and the Tamimi family have been targeted by the Israeli occupation for their role in the indigenous anti-colonial land defense resistance in the village of Nabi Saleh, their village of 600 Palestinians that has been the site of long-term organizing and struggle against the confiscation of their land and spring by the illegal Zionist settlement of Halamish. The arrest of Ahed and her mother is an attempt to suppress Palestinian organizing and resistance.
Samidoun is joining with many others around the world to urge protests and actions between 26 and 30 January to greet Ahed on her birthday and demand her freedom and that of her fellow Palestinian prisoners.
The resistance of the Palestinian people has never been quelled by arrests or repression, and it must be clear that we, around the world, stand alongside the Palestinian people as they defend their entire land and people. This includes standing with Ahed Tamimi and all detained and jailed Palestinian prisoners in their struggle for liberation for themselves, their people, and their occupied homeland.
- Demand your government officials intercede for the release of Ahed, 350 imprisoned Palestinian children and over 6,000 Palestinian political prisoners. On January 26, 29 and 30, call your country’s officials and urge them to act:Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop: +61 2 6277 7500
Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland: +1-613-992-5234
European Union Commissioner Federica Mogherini: +32 (0) 2 29 53516
New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs Murray McCully: +64 4 439 8000
United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson: +44 20 7008 1500
United States President Donald Trump: +1-202-456-1111In the United States, call your member of the House of Representatives to support H.R. 4391, the Promoting Human Rights by Ending Israeli Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act. Tell them specifically about Ahed’s arrest, and urge them to act for her release. Tell them to pressure Israel to free Ahed and other detained Palestinian kids. Call the House switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak to your Representative’s office.
- Write to Ahed. While Zionist jailers frequently censor Palestinian prisoners’ mail, it can help bolster morale and even send a message to the jailers and censors themselves. Write to Ahed Tamimi, HaSharon Prison, Ben Yehuda P.O. Box 7, 40 330 Israel. If you gather with other supporters to send Ahed letters and birthday cards, you can also take the opportunity to write your government officials, demanding they intercede for her release.
- On January 30 or as close as possible, organize or join a protest for Ahed. Demonstrate outside your local Israeli embassy, consulate or mission, at a public square or government building, or against a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign target. You can drop a banner or put up a table to support Ahed and other Palestinian political prisoners. You can also bring signs and flyers about Ahed to local events about Palestine and social justice. Please tell us your plans so we can help promote them, then send us pictures and reports of your actions, by messaging them to us on Facebook or sending us an e-mail.