Know Ahed Tamimi, Palestine's 21-Year-Old Activist Detained By Israel

Israel's Army has arrested activist Ahed Tamimi from the occupied West Bank, for allegedly inciting violence and terrorist activities. Know who this iron-willed Palestinian activist is.

Tanya Savkoor
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Ahed Tamimi has been detained by the Israeli army on several accounts in the past. Photo: Ammar Awad, Reuters

Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi was arrested by the Israel Defense Forces on November 6 for allegedly inciting violence and terrorist activities following a raid at their house in the occupied West Bank. An IDF spokesperson told the media that 21-year-old Tamimi was held as a suspect from her town of Nabi Salih near Ramallah and transferred to Israeli security forces for questioning.


Last week, Tamimi allegedly took to her Instagram to share a post that read, "We are waiting for you in all the West Bank cities from Hebron to Jenin - we will slaughter you and you will say that what Hitler did to you was a joke," thus sparking rage among netizens.

According to AFP, Tamimi's mother denied that the post was written by her. "There are dozens of (online) pages in Ahed's name with her photo, with which she has no connection," Nariman Tamimi told AFP, and also added that there was no news about the whereabouts of her father, Bassem Tamimi, who had been arrested on October 20.

A Symbol Of Palestinian Resistance

The entire Tamimi family from Nabi Salih is known for their undeterred activism for a free Palestine, with Tamimi becoming a national hero, while also being subjected to violence and threats from a very young age. The Guardian's Harriet Sherwood even described the family's normality as a life of checkpoints, demolitions, identity papers, and violence. 

Tamimi was only 11 years old when she tried to intervene in the arrest of her mother in August 2012, impressing even President Mahmoud Abbas. In the same year, she was mentioned in International media, when a photo of her attempting to hit an Israeli soldier went viral on social media. Again three years later, another video of her went viral on Facebook, in which she was seen biting an Israeli soldier.


First Arrest At 16 Years Of Age

In 2017, 16-year-old Tamimi was incarcerated for eight months on charges of assaulting an Israeli soldier. Tamimi's 15-year-old cousin was shot in the head by the soldier, upon which Tamimi, her mother, and her cousin began hitting and shoving the soldier, leading to their arrest on 12 charges including assault, incitement and past instances of stone-throwing. The case drew attention worldwide and initiated rallies in support of the young activist in different countries. 

While in prison, Tamimi, who wants to study law, spent her time learning law books. She told The Guardian, “This experience added value to my life, maybe it made me more mature. More conscious.” She also added, “The experience of being arrested was really hard. As much as I try, I cannot describe it." In July 2018, Tamimi was released and expected to pay a fine of 5,000 shekels (approx. Rs. 1,07,000).

A lot of irrelevant comments have been made about Tamimi's appearance too. During her trial, a video released by her family went viral, where the interrogators were threatening her and commenting on her body, fair skin, and "eyes of an angel". Israeli netizens specifically target Tamimi for her curly hair online.


Tamimi's resilience stands as a microcosm of the Palestinian struggle for a free nation, especially among women and children.  A recent statement released by UN aid organisations stated the repercussions of the Israel-Hamas conflict have had a worse effect on these groups.

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