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Sep-10-2012 00:47printcomments

Urgent: Zakaria Zubeidi on Death Fast!

Palestinian Authority imprisoned co-founder of The Freedom Theatre and former Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade leader nearly four months ago.

Zakaria Zubeidi
Zakaria Zubeidi photo courtesy: Maan News

(JENIN, West Bank Occupied Palestine) - Today the release of Zakaria Zubeidi was yet again postponed for 8 days for additional investigations.

As a response Zakaria announced he will embark on a food and fluid strike, a so called death fast, which effectively means that unless the Palestinian Authority releases Zakaria he will most probably not make it through the week.

Zakaria Zubeidi, co-founder of The Freedom Theatre and former leader of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, has been imprisoned by the Palestinian Authority for close to four months.

No charges have been made against him, no evidence presented and throughout his imprisonment his rights has been severely violated, as described by among others Human Rights Watch


The Freedom Theatre
Jenin, West Bank, Occupied Palestine
September 9, 2012

The Freedom Theatre

There are so many tragic stories associated with the Freedom Theatre in Jenin. In short, it was a project developed to not just save Palestinian orphans in this war-torn place, but give them valuable skills in acting.

According to the Website: The Freedom Theatre - a theatre and cultural centre in Jenin Refugee Camp - is developing the only professional venue for theatre and multimedia in the north of the West Bank in Occupied Palestine. Since it opened its doors in 2006, the organisation continues to grow, develop and expand, enabling the young generation in the area to develop new and important skills which will allow them to build a better future for themselves and for their society.

The movie below in its full length is the story of Freedom Theatre and Juliano Mehr Khamis who was a dear friend of several writers. Mer-Khamis' mother, Arna Mer, was an Israeli Jewish activist for Palestinian rights. His father, Saliba Khamis, was a Christian Palestinian. Mer-Khamis was born and raised in Nazareth.

He was murdered in West Bank on 4th April 2011, after returning from his career where he worked as an actor in a number of films including The Little Drummer Girl; an American thriller from 1984 directed by George Roy Hill and starring Diane Keaton, Avi Nesher's film, Za'am V'Tehilah (1985). Later he appeared in several Israeli films.

Mer-Khamis was married to Jenny, a Finnish activist he met in Haifa. They had a son, Jay, and were expecting the birth of twins at the time of his death.

More information:



Previous press releases, background and updates:


Zakaria Zubeidi remains in prison (02092012)


Zakaria Zubeidi's release postponed (27082012)


Zakaria Zubeidi to be released on bail (22082012)


Zakaria Zubeidi temporarily released (19082012)


Human Rights Watch calls for end to harassment of The Freedom Theatre (28072012)


New information on Nabil and Zakaria (11072012)


Nabil and Zakaria on hunger strike (05072012)


Latest news on Nabil and Zakaria (01072012)


Action Alert: Free Nabil Al-Raee and Zakaria Zubeidi (07062012)

It was almost one year ago exactly that we carried reports about the Freedom Theatre facing the threat of total closure and this is a tragedy when considering the history and potential of this organization that is highly organized in spite of the ongoing occupation and military strikes from Israel.

The Economist wrote:

    In 2006, Mer-Khamis established the Freedom Theatre along with Zakaria Zubeidi, a former military leader of the Jenin Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, Jonatan Stanczak, a Swedish-Israeli activist, and Dror Feiler, a Swedish-Israeli artist. The Freedom Theatre is a community theatre that provides opportunities for the children and youth of the Jenin Refugee Camp by developing skills, self-knowledge and confidence and using the creative process as a model for social change

Visit this link for many reports on the Freedom Theatre<




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