Israeli soldiers abducted, on Friday evening, a young Palestinian man from Beit Ummar town, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, and invaded a public park in Yatta, south of the city.
The soldiers stopped a Palestinian bus at the main entrance of Beit Ummar, examined the ID cards of many Palestinians while interrogating them, and abducted a young man, identified as Yousef Ahmad Ezzat Awad, 22, a student of Al-‘Arroub Technical College.
Furthermore, the soldiers invaded the public park of Yatta city, south of Hebron, and removed the Palestinians, before accompanying illegal Israeli colonizers into the area.
Earlier this month, Israeli police forces dressed in civilian clothes broke into the Palestinian al-Mujahidin cemetery and destroyed the tombstones of seven Palestinians killed by Israel.
Located just outside the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem, al-Mujahidin cemetery is the final resting place of several Palestinian “martyrs” who were killed by Israeli forces in the so-called Jerusalem Intifada that began in 2015.
Many of the slain Palestinians who are buried in the cemetery were deemed by the Israeli state as “terrorists” after some carried out attacks on Israelis. Several of the Palestinians’ bodies were held for hundreds of days by the Israeli state before being returned to their families for burial.
Prior to the release of their bodies, however, the Israeli police stipulated that any Palestinian from East Jerusalem accused of terrorism be buried in the al-Mujahidin cemetery, as opposed to the cemeteries in their respective towns.
Due to the fact that many slain Palestinians were buried in al-Mujahidin cemetery, it became a place where Palestinians from Jerusalem, and those visiting from the West Bank and elsewhere, would visit to pay their respects.
The tombstones of the slain Palestinians were engraved about a year-and-a-half ago with a verse from the Quran and the sentence “graves of heroic martyrs of the Intifada of Jerusalem.” Israeli authorities objected to the use of the word “hero,” and demanded the cemetery administration removed the new addition.
After the administration refused, the Israeli officers broke in in the middle of the night and destroyed the tombstones with hammers and other hand tools.
Activists in the Netherlands changed street names in 13 Dutch cities who “woke up with an additional street name” on 23 March; placards and street signs had been placed around the cities labeling important thoroughfares “Ahed Tamimi street.” MovementX and DocP, two Dutch organizations that advocate for Palestinian rights, posted the grassroots street signs in Amsterdam, The Hague, Rotterdam, Groningen, Leeuwarden, Grijpskerk, Assen, Leiden, Heemstede, Tilburg, Vlaardingen and Nijmegen.
The activists sought to highlight the sentencing of Ahed, 17, a Palestinian teen activist sentenced to eight months in Israeli prison by the Ofer military court on 21 March.
“For a small act of resistance against an Israeli soldier who was illegally in the yard of her house, she was sentenced to 8 months in prison and a hefty fine. Her family members received similar punishments. On the same day, the Israeli soldier Azaria who had shot a Palestinian man in the head in 2016 who was already dying from a bullet wound, saw his sentence reduced from 8 to 9 months. The activists are outraged that the Dutch government so far did not not exercise significant pressure on Israel for Tamimi’s release,” said MovementX and docP in a press release.
Ahed Tamimi’s case received worldwide publicity and attention after she was seized by Israeli occupation forces in December 2017. Ahed and her family are leaders in the indigenous anti-colonial resistance and land defense in the Palestinian village of Nabi Saleh, under attack by occupation forces and the illegal settlement of Halamish. Ahed, then 16, was seized by occupation forces in a pre-dawn raid on her family home in Nabi Saleh by occupation forces days after a video streamed on Facebook by her mother, Nariman Tamimi, documented her confrontation of an Israeli soldier. Ahed slapped the soldier, demanding that the heavily armed occupation forces leave her family’s land. Hours later, her mother Nariman was arrested as well.
The organizers noted a particular likeness to Hannie Schaft, a heroine of the Dutch antifascist resistance. “Both are praised for their courage, and their striking hair. Hannie Schaft, herself a communist, was given the nickname ‘The girl with the red hair.’ Ahed Tamimi is famous for her striking blond curls and her free-spirited behaviour. In Leiden, therefore, Ahed Tamimi’s nameplate is placed in the Hannie Schaftstraat, joined to the nameplate of Hannie Schaft.”