Layan Kayed, a Palestinian student activist at Birzeit University, West Bank, was arrested in the early hours of 7 June by Israeli occupation forces. Kayed was detained for 16 months in an Israeli prison for her student activism for the liberation of Palestine.
According to the prisoners' human rights association Addameer , Kayed's phone and laptop were stolen during the raid on her home in Ramallah. Subsequently, the Ofer Military Court ordered her to be detained for eight days without access to lawyers.
This detention is an obvious reprisal by the Israeli occupation against the mobilisations of student organisations in the occupied Palestinian territory, as in the case of the students of Birzeit University who articulate themselves in protests, especially in the illegal settlements, at military checkpoints, in addition to participating in demonstrations against the occupation. Many were arrested and, as local activists report, some were killed by Israeli military forces.
In May this year alone, more than 400 Palestinians, including 52 children, were detained, according to the Palestinian Centre for Prisoner Studies. There are some 5,000 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli custody, of whom 1,200 are in administrative detention (i.e. without trial).
The number of deaths has also increased. There has recently been a significant escalation of attacks by both the occupying forces and Israeli settlers. From the beginning of the year to date, some 120 Palestinians, including at least 20 children, have been killed in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health. More than 4,000 have been injured.
The case of Layan Kayed shows that Palestinian youth are resisting and gaining strength despite all the repression. Student activists like Layan Kayed are at the forefront of this movement. Many Birzeit University students have been arrested for their activism on campus, accused of absurd offences such as selling falafel at student fairs or organising book sales.
Against the apartheid system promoted by the Israeli occupation in Palestine, it is necessary to stand in solidarity and strengthen Palestinian resistance, as well as to echo the will of Palestinian youth who no longer accept their own government's collusion and support for Israel.
Free Layan! Free all Palestinian political prisoners.
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