Labour's Corbyn Says Palestinian Teen Arrested by Israel 'Shouldn't Be in Prison'

Corbyn urged a 6-year-old girl who raised Ahed Tamimi's case with the politician to tell 'the authorities' that children should never be in prison

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn meeting discussing Ahed Tamimi's arrest on December 20, 2017.
Twitter/ Clayton Swisher

British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn criticized Israel's arrest of Palestinian teen Ahed Tamimi in a video of Corbyn and a 6-year-old girl posted by her father last week.

The 6-year-old girl, daughter of journalist Clayton Swisher, raised the issue with Corbyn. "There's a girl in Palestine, that's been arrested overnight," she said, not quite finishing her sentence.

Corbyn thanked her for the question, and said in response "This girl who has been arrested, she shouldn't be in prison because children should never be in prison. And if people are standing up for their rights, then they should be allowed to do that."

Ahed Tamimi, 16, was arrested in the West Bank a day after a video of her punching, slapping and kicking them two Israeli soldiers went viral. Border Police officers and Israeli army soldiers removed Tamimi from her home in Nabi Saleh, near Ramallah, and she was brought in for questioning. Her mother Nriman Tamimi and her cousin were also arrested.

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Corbyn encouraged the girl and others to send Tamimi messages of support and "say to the authorities 'Please, no more imprisonment of children. Let them go free. Let them be children'."

The teenager has been involved a number of similar incidents with Israeli soldiers. In a 2015 video clip, she tries to prevent soldiers from making an arrest in Nabi Saleh. In the clip, a soldier attempting to detain a youth who had been throwing rocks is attacked by a number of women, including Tamimi. Ultimately the commander in charge ordered the soldier to release the youth.