Published: Thu, March 01, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Israel arrests family of detained Palestinian teen

Israel arrests family of detained Palestinian teen

She was arrested on Dec. 19 after a video of her slapping two Israeli soldiers outside her home in the occupied West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, in mid-December went viral.

Moments after Muhammad was shot, his then 16-year-old cousin Ahed learned of his injury as Israeli soldiers continued to surround the village, including her family home.

There are altogether 20 Palestinians arrested during the raids, including minors and an injured boy.

Israeli soldiers had shot Muhammad in the face with a rubber-coated steel bullet in December, during demonstrations in Nabi Saleh against US President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Ahed has said in court she was angry over her cousin being shot by soldiers hours earlier, but on Monday, Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) Major General Yoav Mordechai contested that claim, after Mohammed and eight others were arrested in an IDF raid of the West Bank town of Nebi Saleh early Monday morning.

The Tamimi family statement also noted that this attempt to deny that Mohammed had been shot by an Israeli soldier followed a freakish claim from another senior Israeli official who argued that Ahed and her cousins were unrelated actors only pretending to be oppressed by Israel.

After his release, Mohammed confirmed to a reporter for Agence France-Presse, Joe Dyke, that he did tell Israeli interrogators - who accused him of taking part in the December protest they described as a "violent riot" - that his head injury was caused by falling from his bike. Many Palestinians see her as bravely standing up to military control over the West Bank, while Israelis accuse her family of using her as a pawn in staged provocations. Several members of the family have been detained and killed over the years.

Tamimi's head injury is thought to have been the catalyst for Ahed's actions. Tamimi was seriously injured on December 15, 2017 when he was struck in the head by a rubber bullet fired by an Israeli soldier.

Ahed is famous across Palestine and the Arab world for videos of her, since her childhood, defiantly resisting Israeli soldiers who clash with Palestinians in her village almost every week.

Ahed has been held in an Israeli military prison for months and is now facing a dozen charges in a military courtroom. A response from his family was also added, along with his medical records.

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