Palestinians held without trial to 'boycott' Israeli courts

Palestinians held without trial to 'boycott' Israeli courts

Palestinians held without trial to 'boycott' Israeli courts

A trial began in military court for the Palestinian teen arrested in part for slapping and harassing Israeli soldiers standing guard in a West Bank Palestinian village.

She claimed she slapped the soldiers in the December 15th incident because she had just found out that Israeli troops had seriously wounded a 15-year-old cousin, shooting him in the head from close range with a rubber bullet during stone-throwing clashes.

Outside court, Tamimi's lawyer Gaby Lasky said her family wanted the case to be heard in public, but the judge had ordered the numerous journalists present to be removed from the courtroom for the proceedings because she was a minor.

ISM sat down to speak with Ahed's father, Bassem Tamimi, at the family home in Nabi Saleh to discuss the events of the trial.

"By refusing to release Ahed Tamimi since her arrest on 19 December, the Israeli authorities have shown nothing but contempt for their obligations under global law to protect children", Magdalena Mughrabi, deputy director of AI's Middle East and Africa chapters, said.

In response to the court's decision, Ahed Tamimi's attorney, Gabi Lasky pointed out that the police and the IDF themselves have been photographing Tamimi throughout the procedure.

On Tuesday morning Tamimi, wearing prison uniform and with her hands and feet in restraints, was led into the courtroom at the Ofer military prison near Ramallah for preliminary trial hearings.

Despite a push from Tamimi's family to have her trial open to the public, a judge rejected the proposal, ruling that it would not be in the interest of the teenager, who is being tried as a minor, Channel News Asia reported.

Israelis accuse her family of using her as a pawn in staged provocations.

Ahed Tamimi, a 17-year-old girl, arrived in court to face 12 charges including assaulting security forces, incitement and throwing stones.

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Already a poster child for the Palestinian cause, her arrest has propelled her to new levels of fame.

Bassem Tamimi told journalists after the adjournment that "having people attend the court - journalists, consuls, diplomats, observers and lawyers - is very important because it keeps them safe and makes us feel that those in court are safe". She was arrested at her home December 19 in the middle of the night and has been in detention ever since.

Mira Regev's reaction to the Tamimi video clip situates the Israeli reaction to Ahed Tamimi's in ways that seem to reflect the dominant mood in the country that perversely reverses the realities of oppressor and oppressed, victimizers and victims: "When I watched that I felt humiliated".

The next session in the case was set for March 11. "They can see in the video a child pushing heavily armed soldiers away from her house", she said.

The Israeli army has yet to issue an official statement on the arrests.

Worldwide human rights groups have criticized the full-throttle prosecution of a minor. It is this disparity between the reality of Palestinian resistance and the rhetoric of Israeli oppressive options that gives Ahed Tamimi's story such symbolic poignancy.

The scuffle took place amid clashes and protests against US President Donald Trump's controversial recognition of Jerusalem as Israel 's capital.

This is not an "isolated case, " said Michael Lynk, special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory on Tuesday.

But the tussle of television cameras and photographers that crowded in for a shot of her in the dock of a small Israeli military court in Ofer for a bail hearing last month was a reminder that she is far from it.

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