Palestinian sentenced to jail for 'incitement' with poems

Palestinian sentenced to jail for 'incitement' with poems
2 min read
31 July, 2018
An Israeli court sentenced an Arab woman to five months in prison for incitement to violence for poems and other social media posts, the justice ministry said.

Dareen Tatour wrote poetry on resisting Israeli occupation [Facebook]
A Palestinian woman was sentenced to five months in prison for incitement to violence and support for a terrorist organisation in poems and other social media posts, the justice ministry said.

Dareen Tatour, 36 and an Israeli citizen, posted a video clip of herself reading her poem "Resist, my people, resist them," in October 2015, accompanied by pictures of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces, according to authorities.

The posts on YouTube and Facebook came as a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence was erupting.

She was convicted in May and sentenced in the Nazareth district court. Her lawyer Gaby Lasky was expected to appeal.

But her prosecution has drawn international criticism.

International writers group Pen has defended Tatour, saying she "has been convicted for doing what writers do every day - we use our words to peacefully challenge injustice."

The poem was quoted in Hebrew in the charge sheet, but according to an English translation on the Arabic literature and translation site ArabLit, it contains the following lines:

"For an Arab Palestine, I will not succumb to the 'peaceful solution,' Never lower my flags, Until I evict them from my land, Resist the settler's robbery, And follow the caravan of martyrs." 

Prosecutors said that on October 4, she also quoted a statement by Islamic Jihad calling for "continuation of the intifada in every part of the West Bank," alleging it showed her support for the outlawed militant group.

Tatour, from the Arab village of Reineh near Nazareth, was arrested on October 11, 2015.

Her sentencing comes after Israeli authorities on Saturday arrested two Italian graffiti artists painting a mural of Palestinian icon Ahed Tamimi on the separation fence in the occupied West Bank.

News of the Italian artists' arrest was made on Twitter when the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) posted a video of the incident. 

The video shows armed soldiers ordering the two men, along with a Palestinian activist, to get out of a car next to the separation barrier. They are led away through an opening in the barrier. Israel's military had no immediate comment.

Palestinians have very limited self-rule in the occupied West Bank, which Israel occupies. 

More than 600,000 Israeli Jews live in settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, in constructions considered illegal under international law.

Israeli armed forces have shot and killed at least 150 Palestinians in 2018, the majority during protests in the Gaza Strip.