Prominent Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi is among the 50 female Palestinian prisoners set for potential early release as part of an extended truce agreement with Hamas, reported Israeli media on Tuesday. Tamimi, considered an icon of resistance for Palestinians, was recently arrested during a raid in the West Bank, suspected of inciting violence and engaging in terrorist activities in Nabi Salih.
At 14, Tamimi gained fame after a video showed her biting an Israeli soldier attempting to arrest her brother, whose arm was in a cast. This incident elevated her as a symbol of the Palestinian cause. A large portrait of Tamimi adorns the Israeli separation wall near Jerusalem, in Bethlehem.
Earlier this month, Tamimi was detained after a social media post where she suggested Palestinians would “slaughter” settlers and “drink their blood,” as reported by The Times of Israel. Now 22, Tamimi made headlines as a teenager for slapping an Israeli soldier, an act she defended, citing the soldiers’ prior shooting of her cousin with a rubber bullet an hour before the incident.
In 2017, Tamimi was imprisoned for eight months after she confronted Israeli soldiers in the courtyard of her family home, asking them to leave. Despite controversy over an Instagram post calling for violence in the West Bank and mentioning Hitler, her mother, Narimane Tamimi, denies Ahed’s authorship, citing frequent account blocks when Ahed attempts to use social media.
While Tamimi is celebrated as a symbol of resistance by Palestinians, Israeli media has labeled her a “provocateur” adept at garnering attention for her actions. Former Israeli ambassador to the US, Michael Oren, accused her family of orchestrating provocative incidents with children for media attention, condemning such actions as abusive on the social media platform X.
This situation has sparked debates surrounding Tamimi’s activism, with polarizing views from both Palestinian and Israeli perspectives.