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CIVIL servants stood up for imprisoned Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamimi today and have called for protests to release all Palestinian child prisoners.
Meeting at the PCS union’s annual conference in Brighton, delegates lashed out at the “inhumane” treatment of Palestinian children by the Israeli military.
The focus of the motion, which was submitted by HM Revenue and Customs workers in Leeds, drew particular attention to Ahed’s case.
Ahed, a 16-year-old girl, was detained for confronting Israeli soldiers outside her house and slapping one of them.
She has allegedly been subjected to sexual harassment while incarcerated and may face years of imprisonment for a minor assault.
She has since become a cause celebre across the trade union and progressive movements worldwide.
The motion condemned Israel for being the “only country in the world” that “systematically prosecutes children in military courts,” with the number ranging from 500 to 700 every year.
The ill-treatment of all child prisoners was also highlighted, with several delegates pointing out how children are bound and shackled, interrogated without legal protection and regularly assaulted by adults.
One delegate from HMRC also pointed out that many “confessions of guilt” from child prisoners are written in Hebrew — a language that the vast majority of Palestinian children cannot understand — and attacked the “gross injustice” of these “false confessions.”
The motion, which was passed overwhelmingly, called upon the union to campaign for Ahed’s release, and to support all protests called in her defence.
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