PNN Report: youngest Palestinian prisoner’s parents speak out about their daughter conditions

PNN/Bethlehem

The Israeli military court at Ofer prison on February 18 sentenced a 12-year-old Palestinian girl, named Dima al-Wawi, to four months and a half in prison and an eight-thousand-shekel fine claiming she was planning to attack an Israeli soldiers with a knife.

Al-Wawi, a 7th grader from the West Bank town of Halhoul, near Hebron, was arrested on February 9 while on her way to school wearing her school uniform, for allegedly “wielding knife at armed Israeli soldiers.”

Al-Wawi, youngest Palestinian in Israeli prisons, showed up in court wearing the same school uniform she had on the day of her arrest.

At that time, her family asserted that they were prevented from visiting their child or bringing her new clothes, despite the cold weather and harsh conditions in Israeli detention centers.

Family members also stated that they have been prevented from speaking to their daughter before or even during trial, confirming that Dima was interrogated without the presence of a parent or a lawyer.

Since her arrest, Dima’s family are living under extremely difficult psychological circumstances.

They received a letter from her, though the hands of her lawyer.

Subhia al-Wawi, Dima’s mother, in an interview with a PNN reporter stated that her daughter sent her and her family a the letter through their lawyer, since they are not allowed to see the child.

With tears in her eyes, al-Wawi read the letter: “My beloved mom, dad, and dear brothers:  I miss you all so much and I know that you are with me.  I am good, healthy, fine and happy. With love, Dima.”

Al-Wawi said that as any other child, her daughter has the right to play and to eat properly, referring to Dima’s arrest and captivity in an Israeli jail, violating Dima’s children rights.

She added that Dima’s lawyer tried to appeal and to prove that the accusations against her daughter are false, but all in vain.

While speaking about her daughter, Subhia pointed out once again that her daughter is the youngest prisoner in Israeli jails among men and women and added, in deep sorrow, that she couldn’t express her sadness regarding the Israeli prevention of her seeing her daughter even though the visiting jail area: the glass and the telephone.

For his part, Ismail al-Wawi, Dima’s father, seating beside his wife, said that he feels great concern over his daughter mental and physical health, specially because she is just a child.

Ismail also pointed out that he believe that his child is exposed and subjected to physical and psychological torture, exemplifying daily insults.

Furthermore, he explained that they have information that she was beaten at the detention center while waiting to go from the prison to the Israeli court.

Finally, al-Wawi also noted that is unreasonable to tied a 12-years-old child with chains on her legs and hands, adding that he does not know the ‘taste’ of sleeping for two months now.

He asks for the help of international human rights institutions to work together with Dima’s lawyer for her immediate release.

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