A video (graphicy content and heartbreaking) was posted on the X platform (formerly known as Twitter) showing a Palestinian woman who freed in the recent Hamas-Israel prisoner exchange. The user (and the video caption too) claim:

Zionists act like torturing women and cutting their fingers off is a normal thing ...

Honestly I believed the claim made in the post (it's really believable and heartbreaking), but someone made the following claim in the comments, which made me skeptical:

Why would you say something like that? This is Israa' Al-Ja'abes who in 2015 according to reports was attempting a suicide bombing when her car blew up. The fire resulted in her having first, second, and third-degree burns on 50% of her body, she lost 8 fingers, in addition to disfiguration in both her face and back.

Is the claim of this user in the comment correct? Or the claim of the main post is true and Zionists really torture some Palestinian prisoners and cut off their fingers?

  • 2
    In the Arab account, her car caught fire and she tried to escape, but a settlement police officer refused to let her out of the car, which caused the burns and mutilation. But the main source for this is just Palestinian blogs so I feel irresponsible to simply state that as an answer. The Wikipedia article is a total mess but it cites an interview with a defense lawyer who offers a third view
    – Avery
    Nov 26, 2023 at 17:41

2 Answers 2


No she wasn't.

She was hurt when her car, which contained a gas tank, exploded. Israelies claim that it was a failed a failed suicide bombing, while she claims it was from a fault in her car. She never claimed that she was tortured.

Al-Jazeera published this video with the following information:

This Palestinian mother has returned home after 8 years in an Israeli jail...

Ahead of his release Israeli forces, raided and assaulted journalists at Israa's house.

In 2015 her car burst into flames near a military checkpoint. she says a faulty cylinder of cocking gas exploded. Israel called it a failed bombing and convicted her of "attempted murder".

Israa says her burns were neglected and not given proper treatment in prison. ...

Also the following info from this NGO-like website (Addameer: A Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association is a Palestinian non-governmental, civil institution that works to support Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli and Palestinian prisons) almost verify the above story:

On the 11 October 2015, Israa was on her way home to Jerusalem from her husband’s family home in Jericho. She worked in Jerusalem daily due to poor economic status, and she used to bring back with her whatever her in-laws need for the home. That day she had in her car a gas tube which she used for cooking and also a TV.

When she came close to Al-Z’ayyem military checkpoint, the airbag in her car opened which caused a fire to start in the car. Israa told “Addameer”’s lawyer who visited her in Hasharon prison that “The car caught fire without me noticing, so I got out quickly, a police officer came to me with a raised weapon and started yelling at me to ‘drop the knife’ in Hebrew, I didn’t have a knife. Another officer commanded the soldiers to open fire”. “I stayed on the ground for around 15 minutes before the ambulance came.” She added.

Their differences is the cause of the fire, which one says is "faulty cylinder" and the other says "the airbag in her car".

So the main claim apparently is false.

  • The story in my answer is a little vague. That it is unknown how the gas cylinder or airbag caused a fire!!! There was probably a shooting.
    – C.F.G
    Nov 27, 2023 at 10:56
  • Shouldn't you edit out the question where it says "highly believable"?
    – TheAsh
    Dec 3, 2023 at 21:47

The Arab media account is that an Israeli police officer shot at Jaabis' stopped car, causing it to explode. However, the Israeli legal system found her guilty of setting off a car bomb and sentenced her as a terrorist. It is true that Jaabis had tanks of butane in her car, and that the police officer who was investigating her car suffered life-altering burns as a result of the explosion. I don't see any Israeli media reports about the claims of gunfire, although I assume they would deny it.

Arab media also report that the Israeli prison refused to give her ointment to treat her burns, which caused lasting, extensive pain. The police officer burned by her car recently said that he is glad she lost her fingers.

I don't think there will ever be an objective answer to why Jaabis had butane tanks in her car or how exactly they were ignited, but Jaabis' defense lawyer in the Israeli justice system, Lea Tsemel, did believe that Jaabis intended to do harm with them. In the 2019 film Advocate, Jaabis' relative is shown telling Tsemel that Jaabis was in an unhappy marriage.

We then hear Tsemel say:

[1:12:35] It seems there were two suicide attempts in her past that didn't succeed.

Was it a suicide bombing, or not? It's not clear. But she clearly wanted to die.

This ambiguous answer is based on the information I currently was able to verify. This isn't intended to defame anyone and more information might become available in the future.

  • 1
    The article quotes the police officer "ראיתי ארבעה בלוני גז גדולים מאחורה עם מסמרים ופתאום עלה עשן לבן. היא לקחה איזה משהו, התברר שזו מצית ואז הרכב התפוצץ ועפתי 15 מטרים אחורה." or "I saw four large gas cylinders in the back with nails and suddenly white smoke rose. She took something, it turned out to be a lighter and then the car exploded and I flew 15 meters back."
    – Rsf
    Nov 28, 2023 at 9:22

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