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Friday, March 18, 2011

Why the media silence over Hamas attacks of journalists? (Toameh)

Expanding on a theme I wrote about yesterday, from Khaled Abu Toameh:
In the past few days, at least eight journalists were severly beaten with clubs or summoned for questioning while doing their job in the Hamas-cointrolled Gaza Strip when Hamas policemen in civilian clothes began attacking demonstrators.

Other journalists have had their cameras and notepads confiscated while covering various events that were deemed "provocative" by the Hamas authorities.

Hamas believes that intimidation of the media will prevent the truth from coming out. Like most Arab dictatorships, Hamas does not tolerate stories that reflect negatively on its radical regime in the Gaza Strip - the reason the Hamas government has been cracking down on local journalists who fail to toe the line.

Although some of the journalists who were assaulted work with international news organizations, many of these foreign media outlets ignored the story, apparently out of fear of retribution by the Hamas authorities.

These journalists who chose to defy Hamas should be supported not only by their foreign colleagues, but also by Western governments and human rights organizations.

Otherwise, the day will come when the world will never know what is really happening inside Hamas's Gaza Strip.