Female Activist Detained over Humanitarian Work

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Palestinian female activist Aya Khateeb turned herself into the Israeli Jalameh Prison Monday morning, September 18th, 2023, to serve 4-year sentence in prison after a verdict was issued by the Israeli central court in Haifa against her.

Al-Khatib, from the town of Arara in the occupied West Bank, was allegedly accused by the Israeli occupation of raising funds for the benefit of the Hamas movement.

The prisoner had previously spent a year and two months in the Israeli prison of Damon before the final sentence issued, on August 15th, by the mentioned court, which convicted her of “raising funds to support Palestinian resistance fighters belonging to Hamas movement.

Israel’s accusations are contrary to the prisoners’ humanitarian work. Aya Khateeb has been active on her Facebook page in collecting donations basically for sick children in the occupied West Bank and Gaza who are being treated in Israeli hospitals. She also assisted many humanitarian and social campaigns targeting Palestinian university students, who face economic difficulties in paying their tuition fees.

On February 17th, 2020, she was arrested and underwent several weeks of interrogation by the ‘Israeli intelligence agency’ before being charged on March 18th, 2020, with recruiting funds to support “terrorism”.

Al-Khateeb denied all these fake charges against her and stressed that her humanitarian work was only in service of sick children and in reaching out medicines and aid to humanitarian organizations.

She had been on trial for three and a half years and was actually imprisoned for a year and four months before being transferred to house arrest with electronic monitoring in the villages of Basma Tab’un and Zalafa.

Before she turned herself in prison, numerous activists and members of Khateeb’s family took part in a supportive demonstration organized by the High Follow-up Committee for Arab Citizens in occupied Palestine, defending her and demanding of her release.

There are currently 37 Palestinian female prisoners held under harsh conditions in Israeli occupation jails, including mothers and activists.

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