Green Party National Women’s Caucus demands passage of House bill upholding human rights for Palestinian minors and international law

Women’s Caucus condemns the brutal treatment of 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi by Israeli military

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Women’s Caucus of the Green Party calls on Congress to pass HR 4391, “Promoting Human Rights by Ending Israeli Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act.”

The bill, submitted by Congresswoman Betty McCollum (Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party-Minn.), would prevent the use of U.S. tax dollars for the Israeli military’s ongoing detention and mistreatment of Palestinian children.

IMG_1719-edit.jpgRecent news of Ahed Tamimi, a Palestinian teenager who was interrogated and charged with assault by Israeli military forces for slapping an Israeli soldier in December and threatened with rape by an Israeli journalist, highlights the need to recognize that massive detentions and violent interrogations of minors are horrific violations of human rights and international law and need to end.

“I met Ahed’s family when I was in Palestine in October. This family has been put through hell, their home has been raided over 200 times in the past six years,” said Diane Moxley, a member of the National Women’s Caucus.

“The recent incident with Ahed occurred shortly after her 14-year-old cousin was shot in the face with a rubber bullet and required surgery as the bullet lodged in his skull, and another raid of their home, which included tear gas canisters being thrown at windows. We heard stories of many injuries to protesters, at least two deaths, detentions and violent interrogations of minors, adults are held administratively sometimes for years with no hearings,” said Ms. Moxley.

“When we hear stories about what is happening in Palestine, sometimes the children are forgotten in these stories,” said Joy Davis, co-chair of the National Women’s Caucus. “Numerous Palestinian children are being detained, tortured, and have been killed.”

“Palestinian children have witnessed horrendous atrocities that have happened to their friends and family members. Their sense of normalcy has disappeared and this is their new normal. A life that includes the Israeli military invading their homes, separating them from their families, shooting at them, attacking them with grenades, and water cannons. At a time when children should be playing with their friends, Ahed Tamimi had just witnessed her cousin being shot by Israeli soldiers,” said Ms. Davis.

“The Green Party stands unequivocally opposed to torture and rape and threatening women and girls with violence,” said caucus member LuAnne Kozma. “Given the current publicity about sexual predation being raised by the #MeToo campaign, it is an outrage that any remotely professional journalist could write, referring to the detention of women and girls: ‘In the case of the girls, we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras.'”

The quote by Ben Caspit, a journalist for Maariv, an Israeli daily newspaper, was published in the Associated Press and CBS News.

Defense for Children International-Palestine, a local group, said 331 Palestinians under the age of 18 were held in military detention as of May, according to the most recent statistics released by Israeli authorities. In 2016, an average of 375 minors were in detention each month.

The Green Party of the United States has endorsed BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) and cutoff of U.S. military aid until Israel complies with U.N. directives including the right of return for refugees, ending the occupation of Palestinian territories, and guaranteeing full human rights and equality for Palestinians within the occupied territories and for all Palestinian-Israeli citizens who comprise more than 20% of the Israeli population.

The party has also condemned the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements in Palestinian territories.

The Green Party, for which nonviolence is a founding principle, opposes all violence directed at unarmed civilians, regardless of which side commits such violence in any conflict, and endorses a cutoff of U.S. aid for countries that violate human rights. The party condemns all acts motivated by antisemitism and Islamophobia.

U.S. Greens support the efforts of Palestinian, Israeli, and other organizations that are working to resolve the conflict, end the occupation, and ensure safety and equality under the law for Palestinians and Israelis through negotiation, observance of human rights, and application of international law.

See also:

Video: Resistance icon Ahed Tamimi in Israeli military court
The Electronic Intifada, December 24, 2017

Palestinian girl charged after slapping soldier on video
BBC News, January 1, 2018

How Ahed Tamimi was slapped first, and why no one is talking about it
By Jonathan Ofir, Mondoweiss, December 28, 2017

Green Party of the U.S. supports hunger strike by Palestinian prisoners
Press release: Green Party of the United States, May 16, 2017

Platform of the Green Party of the United States: Foreign Policy
Section 2. A Real Road to Peace in the Middle East

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Joy Davis, National Women’s Caucus co-chair, 713-909-4101,
Holly Hart, National Women’s Caucus co-chair, 319-331-9616,
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