Israel Seeks 12 Charges Against 16-Year-Old Ahed Tamimi

Ahed Tamimi was charged with threatening and assaulting an Israeli soldier, interfering with his duties and incitement.

Israeli authorities are seeking 12 charges against Ahed Tamimi, the 16-year-old Palestinian activist who was filmed kicking and slapping Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank.

During a hearing at Israel’s Ofer military court in Ramallah, Ahed was charged with threatening and assaulting an Israeli soldier, interfering with his duties, throwing objects at individuals and property, and incitement, according to her lawyer Gaby Lasky.

In the Dec. 15 incident, Ahed allegedly pushed a soldier and told him, “Get out or I’ll punch you.” She then punched and kicked him, resulting in the charge of assault and interfering with a soldier’s duty.

She is also charged with incitement for spreading the video of the incident on social media and for trying “verbally and in other ways to influence public opinion in the area in a manner that could well disturb public safety or public order,” according to the military prosecution.

The 16-year-old is also charged for throwing rocks at soldiers a few days before the video emerged. Ahed allegedly spat at a soldier, called him a dog, threw garbage cans that made part of the roadblock and hurled rocks at the soldier, the report continues.

She is also charged for a May 2017 incident where she pushed a soldier and reportedly called him a “Nazi terrorist murderer” and “murderer of children.”

Ahed’s mother Nariman and her 20-year-old cousin Nour, were also arrested soon after the Israeli forces abducted the teenager in the dead of the night.

Lasky told Al Jazeera that Nariman was charged with alleged “incitement” for filming the video and sharing it on social media. She is also indicted for assaulting a soldier, obstructing his duties and for disturbing the public order.

Nariman is also charged with previous incidents between May 7 and June 17. The prosecutors claimed she called on people to become martyrs and carry out “terrorist attacks” through Facebook.

The lawyer said both Ahed and Nariman’s charges included older allegations unrelated to the video.

As for Nour, she was charged for allegedly assaulting a soldier and interfering with his duties.

Manal Tamimi, a cousin, was also arrested while she was demonstrating outside the Ofer detention facility to release her relatives.

Lasky said she was able to secure the release of both Nour and Manal, who has not been charged with a crime. However, the Israeli army has until Tuesday to appeal the decision.

Ahed’s father Bassem is afraid his daughter will be imprisoned over the charges for a long time.

“They built the case around her specifically to try to keep her in prison as long as they can,” he said. “I am very worried about my daughter. Her fate is now in the hands of people who don't even see Palestinians as full human beings.”

Lasky also noted that teenagers who are charged with stone-throwing — the most common charge against Palestinian children — face six to nine months in prison. In the occupied West Bank, the “crime” can receive a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison.

A prisoners’ rights group, Addameer, said the Israelis habitually target the youngest, most vulnerable members of politically active Palestinian families.

Bassem told Al Jazeera the Israeli army is hoping to “break Ahed because she is a symbol of the resistance.”

“Israel wants to show other young Palestinians what will happen to them if they try to resist,” he said.


Banner/Thumbnail: REUTERS, Ammar Awad

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