World News

Young Palestinian Christian woman arrested in West Bank

23-year-old Layan Nasir, a member of the Anglican Church in Birzeit - in the Occupied West Bank, alongside the Gaza Strip - was arrested by Israeli forces on the 9th of April.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, was appalled by the incident and posted the girl’s photo along with his thoughts on X: “I’m shocked and deeply concerned by this news. Together with our Palestinian Christian brothers and sisters, I pray for Layan and her family – and for the congregation of St Peter’s Anglican Church in the Occupied West Bank. Please pray for Layan’s safety and swift release.”

Richard Sewell, Dean of St George’s College, Jerusalem, also expressed his shock: “Deeply disturbed and shocked that a member of our church in Birzeit in Occupied West Bank has been arrested by Israeli forces. Layan Nasir is a 23-year-old Palestinian Christian. Family don’t know where she is being held. Great concern and prayers for Layan and her family.”

It is not the first time that Layan has been arrested. She was detained for six months during a military raid in July 2021. At the time, she was a pupil at Birzeit University, studying nutrition and dietetics. Seven soldiers raided her family home at 5.30 am. 

Al Jazeera reports that the number of Palestinians held in prison has doubled since last October to more than 10,000. Many prisoners are being held on ‘administrative detention’, without any charge and among intimidating conditions. According to Defence for Children International charity, Israel gets hold of between 500 – 700 children each year.



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