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Palestinian protesters demand Ahed Tamimi's release

Palestinian protesters demand Ahed Tamimi's release
From Al Jazeera - January 13, 2018

Nabi Saleh, occupied West Bank - Israeli forces have fired tear gas as hundreds of Palestinians protested against the detention of a prominent teenage activist and her mother.

Ahed Tamimi, 16, was detained on December 19 in an overnight raid at her home in the village of Nabi Saleh after a video showing her hitting and slapping Israeli soldiers went viral. Hours earlier, her 15-year-old cousin Mohammad was shot point-blank in the face with a rubber bullet, which left him in a medically-induced coma for 72 hours.

Ahed was indicted on 12 charges earlier this month and could face up to 10 years in prison. Her mother, Nariman, and her 20-year-old cousin Nour were also detained shortly afterwards. Nour has since been released on bail.

On Saturday, Palestinians from various villages in the occupied West Bank gathered in Nabi Saleh to demand the release of Ahed and her mother, as well as protest againstUS President Donald Trump's move last month to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

However, Israeli forces stationed themselves at the entrance of Nabi Saleh an hour before the protest, preventing many foreign activists and journalists from entering the village while also turning away some Palestinians.

The demonstrators initially marched towards a hill adjacent to the illegal Halamish settlement, the construction of which has confiscated hundreds of acres of Nabi Saleh's land.

The protesters then moved on towards an Israeli checkpoint and military tower erected at the entrance of the village.

Israeli forces fired tear gas, causing gas inhalation to dozens of protesters. At least seven demonstrators were injured by rubber bullets, residents told Al Jazeera.

'Nothing will stop us from resisting'

Nabi Saleh has long held Friday protests against Israel's occupation of the West Bank every Friday for years.

Bassem Tamimi, Ahed's father who has spent four years in an Israeli prison, said the message of Saturday's demonstration was clear: "Palestinians will not keep silent while living under occupation".

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