Ahed Tamimi to be Released on Sunday
Remarkably mature for her age, extraordinary teenager Ahed symbolizes heroic Palestinian resistance against brutal Israeli occupation.
She was unlawfully sentenced to eight months in prison for slapping a heavily armed abusive Israeli soldier in response to being slapped after demanding IDF forces leave her family property where they don’t belong.
She’s a redoubtable freedom fighter, her father Bassem proudly explained, earlier saying she’ll “lead the resistance to (oppressive) Israeli rule,” adding:
Though never arrested until last December, she’s “no stranger to (Israeli) prisons.”
She “spent her whole life under the heavy shadow of the Israeli prison – from my lengthy incarcerations throughout her childhood, to the repeated arrests of her mother, brother and friends, to the covert-overt threat implied by (Israeli) soldiers’ ongoing presence in our lives.”
During a 2017 visit to South Africa, Ahed addressed an audience, saying the following:
“We may be victims of the Israeli regime, but we are just as proud of our choice to fight for our cause, despite the known cost,” adding:
“We knew where this path would lead us, but our identity, as a people and as individuals, is planted in the struggle, and draws its inspiration from there.”
“Beyond the suffering and daily oppression of the prisoners, the wounded and the killed, we also know the tremendous power that comes from belonging to a resistance movement; the dedication, the love, the small sublime moments that come from the choice to shatter the invisible walls of passivity.”
“I don’t want to be perceived as a victim, and I won’t give their actions the power to define who I am and what I’ll be.”
“I choose to decide for myself how you will see me. We don’t want you to support us because of some photogenic tears, but because we chose the struggle and our struggle is just. This is the only way that we’ll be able to stop crying one day.”
She was aged-16 when delivering this address, extraordinarily eloquent and passionate. She’s been involved in the Palestinian liberation struggle since age-10.
Her courageous commitment for liberation and justice is why Israel arrested and imprisoned her.
The Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network announced her expected release on Sunday, saying:
After release, she and other “Tamimi women are planning to resume their activism immediately, heading directly to the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, (illegally) targeted for demolition by Israeli occupation forces,” where they’ll hold a news conference.
Ahed and her mother Nariman were unlawfully imprisoned. Her brother Waed is a political prisoner along with thousands of others languishing under Israeli gulag conditions.
After Ahed’s arrest and imprisonment, over 1.5 million people worldwide signed a petition demanding her release.
Italian street artist Jorit Agoch painted a 13-foot-high mural of Ahed on Israel’s illegal apartheid wall.
Another mural on the wall honors 21-year-old volunteer Gazan paramedic Rozan al-Najar, murdered by Israeli snipers for aiding wounded demonstrators, serving them in the line of fire, giving her life to help save theirs.
“Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network eagerly awaits the release of Ahed and Nariman Tamimi on Sunday,” the human rights group said, adding:
“There are thousands – indeed, millions – of people in Palestine and around the world who have played a role in the campaign to win their freedom.”
“The release of Ahed and Nariman must inspire us to escalate our campaigns to win the freedom of all of the other over 6,000 Palestinian political prisoners behind Israeli bars and to win freedom for the land and people of Palestine.”
In a statement to Reuters on Thursday, Bassem said “Ahed will finish her sentence time next Sunday. We will be waiting to welcome her at the Jabarah checkpoint, then head for the press conference, then visit Yasser Arafat’s tomb and Martyrs Shrine in Nabi Saleh, after which we will head home to meet people who are welcoming her release.”
Ahed and Nariman’s freedom could be short-lived. Israel notoriously targets released Palestinian political prisoners for re-arrest.
Ahed’s prominence makes her especially vulnerable. Her courageous activism inspires committed resistance.
Israel confronts it brutally – the way all rogue states operate.
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