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General News    H4'ed 2/5/18

Amnesty Int'l Demands Release of Imprisoned Teen Ahed Tamimi

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Amnesty International is calling for the urgent release of Palestinian teen, Ahed Tamimi: "'There is nothing Ahed Tamimi has done that can justify the continuing detention of a 16-year-old child. The Israeli authorities must release her without delay. In capturing an unarmed teenage girl's assault on two armed soldiers wearing protective gear, the footage of this incident shows that she posed no actual threat and that her punishment is blatantly disproportionate,' said Magdalena Mughrabi, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International. Mughrabi continued, 'Israel is clearly, brazenly flouting its obligations under international law to protect children from overly harsh criminal punishments.'" (Note: Ahed's 17th birthday was Jan. 31, 2018. She spent it in an Israeli prison.)

Ahed is one of approximately 350 Palestinian children currently being held in Israeli prisons and detention centers.

Israeli soldiers have shot, maimed and killed a number of Ahed Tamimi's relatives.

On Dec. 16, Ahed and others were protesting President Trump's proclamation to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Israeli soldiers shot her 15-year-old cousin in the head when he attempted to look over a wall to see if anyone was behind it. Later that day when the heavily armed soldiers entered her family's property, she was videoed yelling and slapping them as they swatted her away. (An unedited version of the recording shows the soldiers vigorously slapping her, first.)

A few days later Israeli soldiers removed her from her home in the middle of the night - one could certainly say "kidnapped" -- and she has been in Israeli prisons since then.

Ahed's cousin Nour was also arrested in connection with the incident but she was released on bail on Jan. 5. Ahed has been denied bail.

UNICEF describes arrests of Palestinian children in their report, "Children in Israeli Military Detention":

Many children are arrested in the middle of the night, awakened at their homes by heavily armed soldiers... Many of the children arrested at home wake up to the frightening sound of soldiers banging loudly on their front door and shouting instructions for the family to leave the house.

(Image by (From Wikimedia) United Nations, Author: United Nations)
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For some of the children, what follows is a chaotic and frightening scene, in which furniture and windows are sometimes broken, accusations and verbal threats are shouted, and family members are forced to stand outside in their night clothes as the accused child is forcibly removed from the home and taken away with vague explanations such as "he is coming with us and we will return him later," or simply that the child is "wanted". Few children or parents are informed as to where the child is being taken, why or for how long.

Ahed Tamimi has become the face of a nonviolent movement against injustice and has been called the "Rosa Parks of Palestine ... The real crime this 16-year-old Palestinian girl committed was resisting a hostile and racist military occupation and its human rights violations, and having the temerity to challenge the toxic masculinity of the Israeli military."

"an unjust law is a code that a numerical or power majority group compels a minority group to obey but does not make binding on itself -- one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws."

Martin-Luther-King-1964-leanin g-on-a-lectern
Martin-Luther-King-1964-leanin g-on-a-lectern
(Image by (From Wikimedia) Trikosko, Marion S., Author: Trikosko, Marion S.)
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Martin Luther King

Letter From Birmingham Jail

In a 2013 report on Israel's treatment of Palestinian children, UNICEF states, "in no other country are children systematically tried by juvenile military courts that, by de nition, fall short of providing the necessary guarantees to ensure respect for their rights. All children prosecuted for offences they allegedly committed should be treated in accordance with international juvenile justice standards, which provide them with special protection. Most of these protections are enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child."

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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)

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