On Tuesday, 8 March, International Women’s Day, at 1:30am, fully armed Israeli soldiers raided the home of Manal and Bilal Tamimi in the village of Nabi Saleh. The soldiers arrested Manal in front of her frightened children, the youngest of which is 10 years old. Manal was then taken to an interrogation which was held at 4am. She is accused of assaulting a border Patrol officer on 30 October 2015 in Nabi Saleh, in addition to leveling threats against him in a Facebook comment.
Today, Wednesday, Manal was brought to the Ofer military court. The police prosecutor requested an 8 days remand ostensibly to continue their investigation. Manal’s attorney, Gaby Lasky, was not permitted to view the confidential evidence against her client, and could only glean the charges from the questions Manal was asked during her interrogation.
Manal Tamimi (43), human rights defender, mother of four and one of the most prominent local leaders of the Nabi Saleh protests against the occupation and land annexation, was led into the court room in shackles, and sat on the defendents’ bench. She continued to smile at her supporters despite the dire circumstances.
The hearing was adjourned as the military judge remanded Manal Tamimi until Friday.
It is vital for me to note that during the 30 October demonstration in Nabi Saleh, which I also documented, there was no direct interaction between the soldiers and protesters, and I did not see Manal confronting a soldier or an officer.
I believe Manal’s arrest is a form of political persecution intended to suppress the villagers’ legitimate protest against oppression.
Free Manal Tamimi and all political prisoners!
Update: The police prosecutor decided to appeal the judge’s ruling to release Manal Tamimi on Friday. The hearing in the matter of the appeal will be held tomorrow, Thursday, at the Ofer military court.
UPDATE: Today, Thursday, the military prosecutor demanded 10000NIS for the release of Manal Tamimi. At the hearing at Ofer military court, the judge ruled Manal’s release and set bail at 4000NIS.