A 16-year-old Palestinian girl, hailed as a hero by Palestinians for hitting and kicking Israeli soldiers outside her home, will remain in detention until the end of her trial for alleged assault, an Israeli military court ruled on Wednesday.
Ahed Tamimi was arrested after she was filmed confronting an Israeli officer and a soldier outside her home in a village in the West Bank on Dec. 15 following what Israel says was an assault by people throwing stones at its troops.
A video of the encounter showed Tamimi slapping an officer and punching a soldier next to him in the face. Both men, who were also kicked by the teenager, wore helmets and combat gear and tried to deflect her blows, but remained largely passive.
The soldiers had deployed in the village during a weekly anti-Israel protest.
Right-wing Israelis have debated whether the troops had appeared weak by opting not to strike back. The Israeli army said they acted professionally by showing restraint.
Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman praised the court’s decision to keep Tamimi in custody, tweeting: “Israel will not permit the harming of its soldiers and anybody trying to do so will pay a heavy price.”
Charges filed on Jan. 1 against Tamimi included aggravated assault, rock-throwing, incitement and participation in “violent riots.” No plea was entered at the hearing.
An adult found guilty of assaulting a soldier could be jailed for up to 10 years, but such an outcome would be unlikely for a minor.
Reuters and Algemeiner Staff