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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Freedom of the press, PalArab style (II)

A nice followup to yesterday's story about PalArab press freedom, from the Jerusalem Post:
A prominent Palestinian journalist from the Gaza Strip has sought political asylum in Norway, Palestinian journalists said Saturday.

Seif al-Din Shahin, the correspondent for the Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya news channel network, left the Gaza Strip together with his family, they said, noting that he had received many death threats over the past few months.

Shahin's request has yet to be approved by the Norwegian government. Several other Palestinian journalists are also reported to have fled the Gaza Strip out of fear for their lives.

Earlier this year, masked gunmen set fire to the offices of Al-Arabiya in Gaza City, causing heavy damage to furniture and equipment. Although no group claimed responsibility, Palestinian journalists blamed members of Fatah's armed wing, the Aksa Martyrs Brigades.

The group was also responsible for beating Shahin in two separate incidents in 2001 and 2004. The second assault followed Shahin's live broadcast of a rally held on Fatah's anniversary. The report angered Fatah leaders who had instructed Shahin and other journalists to report that tens of thousands had participated.

In 2003 he was arrested by the Palestinian Authority security forces because of his reporting. Al-Arabiya's offices in Ramallah have also been attacked by Fatah gunmen on a number of occasions.
I like the fact that Fatah threatens reporters for not lying about the size of their rallies. Which means, of course, that many reporters willingly lie to the world for the Fatah terror thugs. Nice!