|Samahar Masalmeh, with child conceived with imprisoned husband.|
More cases of Palestinian prisoners becoming fathers via sperm smuggling have come out since the first successful artificial insemination of its kind was reported in 2012. Just over a month ago, the wife of a prisoner in Israeli custody gave birth after being inseminated with her husband’s smuggled sperm. No longer unusual or objected, these births are seen by Palestinians as an act of resistance against Israel’s control over Palestinian life.
End of September, Samahar Masalmeh delivered little Kareem at al-Ahli hospital in Hebron. Samahar conceived the baby boy through IVF (in vitro fertilization) using a sperm sample of her husband smuggled from prison two years ago.
Nabil Masalmeh has been inside an Israeli high-security prison for the last 15 years. That’s how long he and his wife Samahar have had no physical contact. There’s no surprise that he arrival of Kareem came as a blessing for the Masalmeh family.
Sitting in her home in Beit Awa, near Hebron, in the West Bank, Samahar explained he and his husband wanted to give a brother or sister to their two other children, who were born before Nabil was jailed.
“We made up our minds on having another baby few years ago, after we heard about other prisoners trying to become fathers through vitro fertilization,” Samahar said delighted, holding her new baby.
For Samahar, waiting for her husband to get out of jail would have meant being too old to bear children.