Israeli-Arab poet Dareen Tatour released from prison

"They tried for years to frighten me and to keep me from writing," Tatour told 'The Jerusalem Post' on the day of her release. "They did not succeed."

September 20, 2018 14:03
1 minute read.
Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour poses for a picture.

Arab-Israeli poet Dareen Tatour poses for a picture during an interview at her house in Reineh, northern Israel September 26, 2017. Picture taken September 26, 2017.. (photo credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)


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Israeli-Arab poet Dareen Tatour, who was sentenced to a five-month incarceration for incitement to violence in July for poems and comments posted on social media, was released from prison Thursday morning.

The three-year legal and literary saga, which garnered widespread attention in Israel and abroad, became a cause célèbre among local and international activists, and a battleground for debates over free speech, discrimination and relations between Israel’s Jewish majority and its Arab minority.

“They tried for years to frighten me and to keep me from writing,” Tatour told The Jerusalem Post on the day of her release. “They did not succeed.”

Tatour said that she continued writing throughout her imprisonment, and is planning on releasing a memoir of her experience tentatively entitled My Dangerous Poem.

Tatour, 36, from the village of Reineh adjoining Nazareth, was indicted in November 2015 for pictures and poems posted to Facebook and YouTube. Tatour is one of only a few Israelis who have been convicted for their social media activity.

Israeli prosecutors insisted, however, that her poems and social media posts encouraged and promoted violence at a time when Palestinians were committing stabbings and other attacks on an almost daily basis.

Jeremy Sharon contributed to this report.

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