Ofer - Administrative Detention, Knives

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Vivi Sury, Norah Orlow, Nitza Aminov (reporting)

Translation: Marganit W.


“I’ll do anything in order to go to jail”


This is what Ahsan Abu Samara, a 36-year old woman from Yata said at her remand extension hearing before Justice Major Kobi Sudary.

Ahsan was arrested on 28.6.17 when she showed up at the checkpoint with a knife announcing she wanted to stab a soldier who had insulted her two years earlier.

The judge asked if she had undergone psychological evaluation, as he too found the story far-fetched.

Ahsan is married with no kids and is in serious conflict with her husband (who was not present in court). Originally, she objected to a psych evaluation, but Atty. Noubani convinced her to consent. That’s when she uttered the above-quoted phrase. The judge ordered an evaluation, and the next hearing was set for 16.7.17.

One can imagine the despair and helplessness that drives a woman to seek prison as the only solution.


Bian Fara’oun was brought before Justice Lieut.-Col. Lieberman.

She is represented by Atty. Andre Rosenthal.


Bian, a student at Al-Quds University, was arrested with two other students on 11.3.17 and is held at Damoun Prison.

She is betrothed to another prisoner, and the fiancé’s brother and mother were present in court, as in previous hearings.

Atty. Rosenthal moved for a postponement and had a request for the judge.

Bian’s father is blind and her brother had been in prison many years ago. The attorney requested a visit permit (given only to close relatives). The father, being blind, cannot travel by himself; the brother, who had been in prison, has no chance of getting a permit, thus the request is for the daughter-in-law to accompany the father on his visit. Until now, the request has been denied (Bian has been in jail for 4 months!).

Atty. Rosenthal claimed that according to the Prisoners’ Rights Law, Lieberman has the authority to intervene. We shall see.

The next hearing is on 13.9.17.


We were going to attend the hearing of Khitam Saafin, chairman of the Union of Palestinian Women’s committees, who was arrested together with Khalida Jarrar in a predawn raid on 2.7.17.

We asked Atty. Mahmoud Hassan about the case and he told us that a decision on a 3-month administrative detention had already been taken. We also learned that Jarrar is being interrogated at Ofer. A couple of days later we found out that Jarrar has been sentenced to a 6-month administrative detention.

Thus, Israel continues to harass and persecute the civil society organizations that try to advance the cause of women.


Later we attended the hearing of Issa Amro and Farid Al-Atrash from “Youths against Settlements” in Hebron. They are represented by Atty. Gaby Lasky. Many human rights activists, both Palestinians, Israeli and foreigners were present.

The court was packed, so we went to another court where cases of minors were heard.

We are barred from reporting on those cases, but we were able to talk to the families.

As always, we heard harsh, heartrending stories.