In the past few weeks, Pro-Palestinian activists have been waging an international campaign for the release of Ahmad Manasrah, a 13-year-old Palestinian boy who stabbed two Israelis in a Jerusalem suburb in October.
Manasrah carried out the stabbing attack in Pisgat Ze’ev together with his cousin, severely wounding a 13-year-old Israeli boy. Israeli police shot Manasrah and his cousin in order to neutralize them, killing the latter while wounding Manasrah, who was taken to hospital.
The incident enraged Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who accused Israel of executing Manasrah “in cold blood.”
Abbas’ claims led Israel to prove that Manasrah was alive and recovering in an Israeli hospital. Israel released pictures of Manasrah convalescing in his hospital bed, and Israel Police sought to refute claims that Manasrah was innocent by distributing video of him and his cousin carrying out the terror attack.
Despite Israel’s efforts, Abbas’ claims that Manasrah is innocent are widely accepted among pro-Palestinian activists around the world, who stand behind the campaign for Manasrah's release.
(Police footage of stabbing attack in Pisgat Ze'ev)
Since children under the age of 14 are considered minors under Israeli law, Manasrah's arrest has been extended repeatedly since he was released from hospital. However, on Friday, Manasrah will celebrate his 14th birthday, which makes him eligible to stand trial.
The demonstrations that have taken place around the world in the past few weeks demand Israel “stop targeting Palestinian children” and release all Palestinian children that are "caged in Israeli dungeons."
On Wednesday, the Palestinian Prisoners Campaign organized a demonstration in front of the London headquarters of G4S, the company that produced the secured prison in which Manasrah is being held, in order to demand that the company "end its complicity in torture and abuse of children."
The head of the Palestinian Prisoners Campaign is Abbas Ali, a pro-Palestinian activist who was arrested by the British police in the past for waving a Hezbollah flag during a pro-Palestinian demonstration in front of the Israeli embassy in London.
Activists from the British city of Bristol have also participated in the campaign by projecting a video about Manasrah on the local council's building on January 17.
Anti-Israel Demonstrations have also taken place in New York and in the Norwegian city of Bergen. In New York, the demonstrators gathered outside the building of G4S with banners saying: "Stop all US aid to Apartheid Israel."
Another part of the international campaign, initiated by the Palestinian Prisoners' Affairs Authority, will be launched on Friday, Manasrah’s birthday. Hundreds of human rights bodies around the world assured their participation in Friday's campaign, titled: 'Our hearts will keep beating.'
Besides the fact that he is a minor ostensibly 'executed' by Israeli police, international human rights activists' support Manasrah’s claims that he is an innocent boy who does not remember committing the acts attributed to him by Israeli security forces.
Manasrah's version of the events is accepted among pro-Palestinian activists to such an extent, that a new hashtag with the words: 'I do not remember', describing Manasrah's answer to the questions of his investigators regarding the stabbing attack, is now very popular on Arab social media networks.