Sama’ Abdulhadi Released From Jail

The Palestinian artist is home after eight-day detention in a Jericho jail.

4 min
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Jan 3, 2021
Beatport Team

Palestinian electronic musician and DJ Sama’ Abdulhadi has been released on bail by Palestinian Authorities (PA) following an eight-day detention in a Jericho jail.

Abdulhadi was released on bail by PA court order on a cash bond of 500 Jordanian Dinar bail. She’s currently restricted from traveling outside Palestine, and is subject to further investigation on the charges of desecrating a holy site and religious symbols, and violating Covid 19 emergency measures.

Though she has not been indicted, Abdulhadi faces up to two years of imprisonment, and is awaiting the Attorney General’s decision as to whether the charges will be pursued or not following the final results of the investigation. Abdulhadi is now safely with her family.

Abdulhadi was held for questioning and then detained on December 27th following a private event created for Beatport’s pre-recorded performance series, The Residency. The location for the event, Maqam Nabi Musa in the West Bank, is in-part still used as a place of worship, but was also declared a tourist attraction by the Palestinian Ministry of Tourism in 2019 and is regularly available for hire. Many non-electronic musical events have taken place there.

Abdulhadi was commissioned by Beatport to film a four-part, one-month residency in late 2020, aiming to showcase the music scene in the Middle East and in Palestine. The third location of the residency, based on Abdulhadi’s own five-hour solo performance, took place in the courtyard of a hostel on the property of the Nabi Mussa historical, tourist and cultural site. It was approved to Abdulhadi in writing by the General Director of the Palestinian Ministry of Tourism. The performance was private, with a total of 30 friends and working crew in attendance. Recording of the event ended when a group entered the venue and told guests to leave, claiming religious protections for the site.

Abdulhadi’s detention led to an outpouring of international support, with artists and DJs from the electronic community as well as musical icons like Brian Eno and Roger Waters calling for her release. A petition asking for her release has over 100,000 signatures at time of writing.

“I am safe and well, and would like to thank everybody who has spoken out in support of my situation and called for my immediate release,” Abdulhadi said in a statement. “I am overwhelmed by the support from my fellow musicians, artists, activists and the entire music community. I want to thank anybody and everybody who has made me feel so supported. At this moment, I just want to spend time with my family.”

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