Mil­i­tary court to try Pales­tinian protest icon

Ottawa Citizen - - WORLD -

Pales­tinian protest icon Ahed Tamimi is to go on trial be­fore an Is­raeli mil­i­tary court on Tues­day for slap­ping and punch­ing two Is­raeli sol­diers — an act Pales­tini­ans say em­bod­ies their David vs. Go­liath strug­gle against a mil­i­tary oc­cu­pa­tion and Is­rael por­trays as a staged provo­ca­tion meant to em­bar­rass its mil­i­tary.

Is­rael’s pros­e­cu­tion of Tamimi, one of an es­ti­mated 300 Pales­tinian mi­nors in Is­raeli jails, and a se­nior Is­raeli of­fi­cial’s re­cent stun­ning rev­e­la­tion that he once had par­lia­ment in­ves­ti­gate whether the blond, blueeyed Tamimis are a “real” Pales­tinian fam­ily have helped stoke on­go­ing in­ter­est in the case.

The teen with the curly mane of hair who turned 17 in jail last month has be­come the lat­est sym­bol of the long-run­ning bat­tle be­tween Pales­tini­ans and Is­raelis over global pub­lic opin­ion.

The case touches on what con­sti­tutes le­git­i­mate re­sis­tance to Is­rael’s rule over mil­lions of Pales­tini­ans, al­ready in its 51st year af­ter Is­rael cap­tured the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem in 1967.

Ahed Tamimi’s sup­port­ers see a brave girl who struck two armed sol­diers out­side her West Bank home af­ter hav­ing just learned that Is­raeli troops se­ri­ously wounded a 15-year-old cousin, shoot­ing him in the head from close range with a rub­ber bul­let dur­ing nearby stone-throw­ing clashes.

Is­rael in­dicted Tamimi on charges of as­sault and in­cite­ment that could po­ten­tially land her in prison for sev­eral years.

Tamimi’s mid­dle-of-thenight ar­rest from her home in De­cem­ber and her pre-trial court ap­pear­ances, flanked by Is­raeli guards and look­ing im­pas­sive, have evoked a sense of his­tory on a loop. An­other gen­er­a­tion of Pales­tini­ans seems locked in a cy­cle of protests and ar­rests by Is­rael, three decades af­ter Pales­tini­ans staged their first up­ris­ing, throw­ing stones and burn­ing tires.

Tamimi’s fa­ther Bassem, who threw his first stone at the age of 14 and was an ac­tivist in the first up­ris­ing, said he ex­pects the mil­i­tary court will deal harshly with his daugh­ter and that she might re­main in prison for some time.

His wife, Na­ri­man, is be­ing pros­e­cuted in the same Dec. 15 scuf­fle in their vil­lage of Nabi Saleh and has been locked up along­side their daugh­ter.

In Is­rael, sev­eral se­nior of­fi­cials have called for harsh pun­ish­ment of Tamimi.

Ahed Tamimi

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.