Palestinians rally in support of jailed ‘slap video’ teen

Palestinian Bassem Tamimi speaks in front of a poster showing his daughter Ahed at his home in Nabi Saleh near the West Bank city of Ramallah. Israel’s prosecution of his 16-year-old daughter who slapped two Israeli soldiers has trained a spotlight on her activist family and its role in what Palestinians call ‘popular resistance,’ or near-weekly protests against Israeli occupation staged in several West Bank villages. (AP Photo)
Updated 13 January 2018
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Palestinians rally in support of jailed ‘slap video’ teen

Nabi Saleh, Palestinian Territories: Clashes broke out after dozens of Palestinian and Arab Israeli supporters of jailed teenager Ahed Tamimi protested near her home in the occupied West Bank on Saturday, AFP correspondents said.
Tamimi, 16, was arrested on December 19, days after a video went viral showing her slapping Israeli soldiers near her home in the village of Nabi Saleh in an apparent attempt to provoke them.
She was charged in a military court on January 1 with 12 counts, including assault. The army kept her in custody.
Tamimi’s mother and another relative were also charged over the same incident, with the latter released on bail until her trial in February.
Around 100 Palestinians from across the West Bank arrived to protest against Ahed Tamimi’s arrest, chanting for her release and against Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.
The demonstration was attended by leaders from various Palestinian factions and Israeli Arab members of Israel’s parliament.
Tamimi’s father Bassem, himself a prominent campaigner against Israeli occupation of the West Bank, thanked participants for their “solidarity with Ahed.”
Protests erupted after the speeches, and Israeli forces fired tear gas at stone-throwing youths.
A spokeswoman for the Israeli army said soldiers used riot dispersal means, and in order to “prevent further violent riots” declared part of the Nabi Saleh area a closed military zone.
Israelis see the video, which showed Israeli soldiers not reacting to an apparent attempt to provoke them, as evidence of the morality of their army.
Palestinians argue that Tamimi was merely seeking to force Israeli soldiers off their land, and point to her subsequent night-time military arrest as evidence of abuse of a child’s rights.
The European Union expressed concern about Israel’s detention of minors, including Ahed, on Friday.
Tamimi and her mother will be in court again on Monday for a hearing on a request that they be released until their trials begin.


Hezbollah names Beirut street after Rafiq Hariri assassin

Rafiq Hariri was assassinated in a blast in Beirut on Feb. 14, 2005. (AFP)
Updated 19 September 2018
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Hezbollah names Beirut street after Rafiq Hariri assassin

  • The decision to name the street after him was “unconstitutional” and “an unnecessary act of provocation,” a source at the Interior Ministry told Arab News

BEIRUT: Pro-Hezbollah politicians in south Beirut were accused of provocation on Tuesday for naming a street after the assassin who plotted the murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri.

To rub salt in the wound, the street is adjacent to the city’s Rafiq Hariri University Hospital. Hariri’s son, Prime Minister Saad Hariri, described the decision by Ghobeiry municipality as “sedition.” 

Hezbollah commander and bomb-maker Mustafa Badreddine was described last week by the prosecution at the Special Tribunal for Lebanon in The Hague as “the main conspirer” in the assassination of Hariri, who died when his motorcade was blown up in central Beirut in February 2005. Badreddine himself was murdered in Damascus in 2016.

The decision to name the street after him was “unconstitutional” and “an unnecessary act of provocation,” a source at the Interior Ministry told Arab News.

“There is no precedent for resorting to these methods in naming streets, especially when the name is the subject of political and sectarian dispute between the people of Lebanon and may pose a threat to security and public order.”

A Future Movement official said: “What has happened proves that Hezbollah has an absurd mentality. There are people in Lebanon who care about the country, and others who don’t. This group considers the murderers of Rafiq Hariri its heroes, but they are illusory heroes.”