Anhar Aldeek is free, Thousands await their freedom
Following a social media uproar by Palestinian and solidarity activists, Anhar Al Deek, a 25-year-old pregnant Palestinian mother has been released from Israel’s Damon prison on bail and placed under house arrest.
On March 8th of this year, Anhar Al Deek was taking a walk on her family's farmland in the village of Kufr Nima in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, when Israeli soldiers confronted her, accusing Anhar of an attempted stabbing attack. The gang of soldiers then proceeded to beat pregnant Anhar, despite her pleas, repeatedly informing the soldiers of her condition.
Anhar was then arrested and transferred to HaSharon Prison in Israel, and later Damon Prison, in contravention to the Fourth Geneva Convention. Anhar was intensely interrogated and placed in solitary confinement, all while suffering from physical pain and depression caused by her pregnancy. According to Aisha, Anhar’s mother, her daughter was also brutally tortured during her interrogation which lasted a month.
Pregnant Palestinian women who have been subjected to Israeli detention in the past have been made to suffer labor while their feet and hands are chained to their hospital bed and Anhar was likely to share the same fate.
However, thanks to the dedication and persistence of Palestinian activists and activists from around the world who stood beside us in solidarity, the Israeli occupation authorities decided to release Anhar on bail with the understanding that she would remain under house arrest.
Though we celebrate Anhar’s freedom from prison, we cannot forget the torture and trauma that she and thousands of other Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails are facing at this moment.
The treatment that Anhar and thousands like her have received is absolutely unacceptable and the United States, as the largest sponsor to Israel’s so-called “security” network, must hold Israel accountable for their enduring violations of human rights. We urge our congressional representatives to take a stance and cosponsor H.R. 2590, the Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act.
As we in the U.S. continue to the long fight for the protection of women’s rights, whether that be reproductive rights, the rights of female prisoners and detainees, or the protection of women against state violence, the U.S. is obligated to also fight to protect the rights of Palestinian women from Israel’s systemic abuse.