Threat To Censor Palestinian Newspapers

Al-AyyamThe International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has condemned the actions of Israeli soldiers who forced their way into the Ramallah headquarters of the press, publishing and distribution company, al Ayyam, this morning, Wednesday 28 May.

According to IFJ affiliate, the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate (PJS), the Israeli forces informed the managment of the company that it would halt the printing and distribution of newspapers that incite hatred against Israel, namely the ‘Palestine,’ ‘Al Risala and ‘Al Istiklal’ newspapers, all of which have their main offices in Gaza. Al Ayyam started printing the three papers three weeks ago following a national reconciliation agreement.

The PJS says the Israeli forces threatened to take “repressive action” against Al Ayyam if they continued printing these newspapers.

“We strongly condemn the actions of Israel forces against Al Ayyam which were clearly intended to intimidate and strike fear into the company’s employees,” said IFJ President Jim Boumelha.

“Such repressive actions directly violate media freedom in Palestine and undermine the right of citizens to access open and balanced information. We call on the Israeli government to keep its forces in check and to ensure all attacks against Palestinian media are stopped.”    

The PJS has stated that the threat by the Israeli forces is an attempt to restrict freedom of expression and an attack on the freedom of media organisations in Palestine.    

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