In what is believed to be the first successful artificial insemination of its kind, a Palestinian mother has given birth thanks to sperm smuggled out from her husband in an Israeli prison. New mother Dalal al-Zebn, the wife of prisoner Ammar al-Zebn who has been behind Israeli bars since 1998, gave birth earlier today (Monday). Mother and baby – a boy, Mohaned al-Taher – are both doing well.
This is not the first time that prisoners' relatives have smuggled sperm for the purpose of artificial insemination, but it is the first successful pregnancy and delivery. "This could not have succeeded without Allah's will," said Mrs Al-Zebn after leaving the delivery room. "I can see my husband Ammar today by looking at his son." She added that she hopes that her husband will be released so that he can help to raise his son.
Mrs Al-Zebn said that she had tried to have artificial insemination twice before, but it was unsuccessful on both occasions. Relatives and human rights monitors have called this a new level of prisoners' defiance of their Israeli jailers.
Ammar al-Zebn was detained on January 1, 1998 at the Karameh Crossing when he was coming from Jordan. He is accused of taking part in fighting against Israelis and is serving 26 life sentences plus 25 years. He already has two daughters, Beesan 14 and Basha'er 16.
MEMO Photographer: Ibtehal Mansour