Prisoners of Apartheid: Soha Bechara

February 20th, 2009 | Posted in Hezbollah, Lebanon, Palestine, Prisoners

lecture from Soha Bechara, Lebanese author and former political prisoner.

    MONDAY MARCH 2nd 7pm
    cégep de St-Laurent, salle Émile-Legault
    625, avenue Sainte-Croix
    Montréal, Quebec
    (metro du Collège)

Soha Bechara, Lebanese author, resistance fighter and former political prisoner will speak in Montreal on the struggles and realities experienced in Israeli prisons within Israeli Apartheid Week 2009.

Bechara born in Beirut in 1967, originally from southern Lebanon, is a celebrated figure who was involved in the Lebanese national resistance, a hero to many in Lebanon and throughout the Middle East.

After occupying southern Lebanon since 1978, Israel launched a military attack on Beirut, bombarding and besieging Beirut in 1982, killing an estimated 10 000 Lebanese and sparking the national resistance movement to the Israeli occupation in Lebanon.

Shortly after the Israeli invasion in 1982, Bechara joined the Lebanese National Resistance Front against Israel’s occupation, in the struggle to liberate Lebanon from Israel’s military occupation.

Israel’s 1982 invasion also sparked the origins of Hezbollah, the Lebanese armed political movement that eventually succeeded in pushing Israeli forces from Lebanon in 2000, an event celebrated in Lebanon and across the Middle East as a profound victory against Israeli colonialism in the region.

In 1988 Bechara, only twenty-one years old, attempted to assassinate General Antoine Lahad commander for the South Lebanon Army, a Lebanese proxy army administering the Israeli occupation in Southern Lebanon.

Lahad survived the assassination while Bechara was arrested and imprisoned in the infamous Khiam detention center without trial, during which time she was repeatedly tortured.

In 1998 Bechara was released after ten years in prison, following an intense campaign in the Middle East, Europe and North America.

Béchara published an autobiography – Resistance: My Life for Lebanon – detailing life in Lebanon from the assassination attempt, to ten years in prison, to experiences in the Lebanese national resistance.

Today Bechara lives in Geneva, Swizerland, is a mother of two girls and is involved in organizing in Europe for Palestinian liberation through Collectif Urgence Palestine, based in Geneva.

Bechara’s experiences are profound and this upcoming lecture in Montreal provides a rare opportunity to hear first hand from a former political prisoner and individual directly involved in anti-colonial struggles for liberation in the Middle East.

It is estimated that upwards of 8,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently detained by Israeli authorities, in prisons which major human rights organizations throughout the world. According to a recent report from Amnesty International, many Palestinian prisoners “face medical negligence, routine beatings, position torture and strip searches by Israeli prison authorities”. According to recent figures the Palestinian prison population includes 400 children and 100 women detainees.

photo Benjamin Aronoff

coordinated by Tadamon! Montreal within Israeli Apartheid Week 2009 in Montreal.



concernant le nombre de prisonniers et prisonnieres,je crois qu’il y a une erreuree,le nombre est plus de 10000,et il y en a qui ont depasse 30ans de prison,sans compter les arrestations continues.

Comment by Rima — February 21st, 2009 @ 8:03 AM

Lebanon is the worst perpetrator of apartheid against the Palestinians…it is ingrained in Lebanese law!

Comment by Abdul Hamid — March 4th, 2010 @ 2:00 AM

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