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Israeli forces crack down on Palestinian press

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Hamde Abu Rahme, by Allison Deger

Hamde Abu Rahme, by Allison Deger

Disturbing reports from Palestine: Israeli forces raid a Palestinian television studio in East Jerusalem and break up the airing of the “Good Morning Jerusalem” program because it is “inciting against” the Israeli occupation. They detain a guest and two employees; and meantime in the Friday Bil’in demonstration, soldiers beat the great photographer Hamde Abu Rahme, break his camera, and erase his images.

Palestinian journalist Daoud Kuttab reports on twitter: “Israeli spokeswoman tells BBC they raided TV studio in J’lm because of content.”

The full report from MADA, the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedom:

Ramallah-6/6/2014: Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedom, MADA, condemns the raiding of occupation forces the place where ”Sabah Al-Khair Ya Quds” Good Morning Jerusalem Program was being filmed, and they forced the staff to stop broadcasting. They arrested the program director of  production, Nadir Paprs, the cameraman of Pal Media agency, Ashraf Al- Shweeki, and one of the guests, claiming that the program is not licensed, and it’s inciting against Israeli occupation.

The director of the program ,Mai Abu Asab, told MADA that Israeli occupation forces raided the headquarter of the studio , where the program was being filmed , in Jerusalem, which was broadcasted live, they told them to stop immediately filming, and they arrested her colleagues, Paprs and Al-Shweeki, who were released  after a half and an hour from interrogation. Mai said: “All the  accusations against the program, it is illegal, not licensed and inciting against Israeli occupation, are not true at all, since we have been broadcasting for five years through Pal Media company which is licensed in the city.” Mai said also that Israeli told  her colleagues that a complaint will be submitted  against the administration  of the program.

Moreover, Israeli occupation forces also attacked the freelance journalist, Hamdi Abu Rahme, by severe beating. They erased all the photos taken by his camera, and its  lens was broken while he was covering the events of the weekly march in Bi’lin village west of Ramallah. Mr. Abu Rahme told MADA an Israeli soldiers had approached near him, and they ordered him to stop filming, giving them his camera. Since he refused that, 6 Israeli soldiers attacked him, and he was beaten in a violent way. They aimed the gun towards his head and his camera was taken forcibly. Abu Rahme added: “They beat me violently, using thir hands and the bottoms of the guns. They also erased all the photos taken by the camera of my freelance colleague, Haitham Al-Khateeb.”

MADA confirms that this violation is a complement of Israeli occupation practices which aim to hide the truth on Israeli occupation practices against  the occupied Jerusalem city and its citizens. MADA  demands the international community to quickly put  an end for Israeli violations on media freedom.

Below, Rahme explains his determination to become a journalist after his cousin was killed by Israeli forces in 2009. Why is it important? Without media, Bil’in would not be known by the world.
Thanks to Max Blumenthal.

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is senior editor of and founded the site in 2005-06.

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21 Responses

  1. amigo on June 7, 2014, 1:09 pm

    Another in a long line of reasons to go to the Hague and get Israel,s criminal leaders dealt with.

  2. Blownaway on June 7, 2014, 1:44 pm

    Demand the international community? The international community as represented by governments have sold out the Palestinians. Until Palestinian leadership is replaced with a grassroots people to people movement, these calls will fall on deaf ears. I remember working in the family deli in San Francisco during the invasion of Lebanon when a drunk Israeli wandered in and he said he was there on a mission from the government to promote the Israeli message into the SF gay community…people to people

  3. ckg on June 7, 2014, 2:42 pm

    There is a collection on GiveForward to raise money to buy Hamde a new camera. He deserves the best camera money can buy.

  4. ckg on June 7, 2014, 2:54 pm

    The raid on the TV studio came up at Friday’s U.S. State Dept daily briefing, in the context of much of the equipment having been supplied by U.S. aid.

    QUESTION: Okay. Moving on to the Palestinian issue and freedom of the press under occupation, today the Israeli forces raided the Palestine TV and arrested two of our colleagues, Nadar Bibars and Ashraf Shobaki, for no reason, and they confiscated a program that was being aired called Good Morning Jerusalem. Do you know about that?

    MS. HARF: We’ve seen those reports that Israeli police entered a Palestinian TV studio in Jerusalem this morning, detained I think three people for questioning, understand that those three individuals have subsequently been released. We are right now seeking further information on this report, don’t have additional comment until we get more information.

    QUESTION: Okay. So did you – you did inquire with the Israelis about this incident?

    MS. HARF: We are inquiring about it. I don’t know if we have yet, but we are, we will be.

    QUESTION: Because I think a lot of these equipment and so on are actually supplied by the U.S. as part of the aid at one time.

    MS. HARF: We’re looking for more information. I’m sure we’ll have more to say over the coming days.

  5. just on June 7, 2014, 3:00 pm

    Monstrous behavior. They really, really hate that the Palestinians have formed a unity government, eh?

    Here’s some nice news:

    “A leading British trade union is planning to send a delegation to Gaza to view the effects of the Israeli blockade on the territory, despite the opposition of the United Kingdom government and the opposition of some of its members.

    The University and College Union voted at its congress last week to send the delegation “as soon as possible,” the Times Higher Education journal reported. The decision was labelled dangerous by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which advises Britons against traveling to the territory, and as an unjustifiable use of money by several of its members.

    The UCU is the largest trade union for academics in the world, with some 108,000 members.

    At least half of the delegation will be women and the trip will take place “in liaison with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign”. It is expected to report back to the union’s national executive committee to help inform union policy on Gaza.”

    • MHughes976 on June 7, 2014, 3:11 pm

      So my UCU subscription would go to finance a trip to Gaza! I can think of many worse uses. Mind you, I don’t suppose for a minute that any delegation would be admitted.

      • just on June 7, 2014, 4:36 pm

        Well, we can always hope that this leads to another vote in favor of BDS and more exposure of the unrelenting and punishing wickedness of Apartheid Israel, and how they flout International Humanitarian Law, including the laws re Occupation.

      • Felixio on June 8, 2014, 8:43 am

        Another reason for expand BDS.

  6. hellsbells on June 7, 2014, 3:10 pm

    What do you mean “occupied Jerusalem”? Apparently nothing in Palestine is occupied according to the Liberal (libraelz—conservative Zionist funded) Australian government. The occupation is just an illusion created by those that wish to delegitimize Israel, that BDS crowd. Apparently that actions of brutality in Palestine are supportive of and assist in giving Israel legitimacy. Who’d have thunk it!

  7. seafoid on June 7, 2014, 3:53 pm

    I just can’t see how Israel qualifies as a light unto the nations. Maybe it was a typo. Maybe the correct word was blight.

  8. Kay24 on June 7, 2014, 4:53 pm

    The shining beacon of light, and the only democracy in the Middle East, once again, showing the world it stifles free speech, or in this case speech criticizing it’s brutal occupation.
    The crazy zionists try to convince us that free speech is halted in neighboring Islamic nations, but here you are, look at what they do.

    • Shingo on June 7, 2014, 5:10 pm

      Yes, these thugs are just the same as the Nazi Gestapo. There is no point pretending otherwise

  9. a blah chick on June 7, 2014, 6:52 pm

    “They arrested the program director of production, Nadir Paprs, the cameraman of Pal Media agency, Ashraf Al- Shweeki, and one of the guests, claiming that the program is not licensed, and it’s inciting against Israeli occupation.”

    So talking about the abuses is worse than the actual abuse.

  10. Citizen on June 7, 2014, 6:53 pm

    A blight onto the nations. Maybe they should try their own handful of Noahide Laws they give to the lesser souls, not the 600 plus they reserve for themselves?

    • annie on June 7, 2014, 7:01 pm

      citizen, could you email me [email protected]. Sarah’s relative wants to discuss something with you.

      i’ve confirmed her identity w/Sarah.

    • wondering jew on June 8, 2014, 6:25 am

      Citizen- This is textbook anti Jewish rhetoric (as in the particular brand located in the antiZionism 2014 shelf). I couldn’t have summed it up better if I sat for three weeks and tried to compose such a line. Congrats!

      • Citizen on June 8, 2014, 8:28 am

        I will let readers here decide for themselves whether these laws apply to the Zionist state of Israel as a light onto the nations–see seafoid’s and Kay24’s comments above on this thread for context:
        Prohibition of idolatry: You shall not have any idols or false deities.
        Prohibition of blasphemy: You shall not curse the name of God in Judaism.
        Prohibition of murder: You shall not murder. (Genesis 9:6)
        Prohibition of theft: You shall not steal.
        Prohibition of adultery: You shall not commit adultery.
        Prohibition of cruelty towards animals: Do not eat flesh taken from an animal while it is still alive. (Genesis 9:4, as interpreted in the Talmud (Sanhedrin 59a))
        Requirement to have just laws: Set up a governing body of justice (e.g. courts)

  11. amigo on June 8, 2014, 7:27 am

    “Citizen- This is textbook anti Jewish rhetoric (as in the particular brand located in the antiZionism 2014 shelf).” yf

    Did you have a comment on Israeli “anti free speech” actions such as the ones covered on this thread.

  12. Felixio on June 8, 2014, 8:47 am

    The only effective medicine for this Zionist disease is BDS medication, not even the US can protect it.

  13. just on June 8, 2014, 9:33 am

    “Civil Administration officials refuse to punish Palestinians for unity government
    Netanyahu seeking ways to inflict damage in retribution for recent diplomatic defeats.
    At a meeting on Thursday of all Civil Administration staff officers – civilian employees of the Israel Defense Forces, each of whom is in charge of a different field in the West Bank, such as water, electricity, transportation, health, welfare, archaeology, industry or environmental protection – attendees were asked to suggest ways to inflict harm on the Palestinians.

    But at the start of the meeting, one of the staff officers stood up and said that if the Civil Administration imposes sanctions on Palestinian civilians, this would destroy the very raison d’etre of the staff officers, which was to serve the Palestinian population. The staff officer’s position received widespread support, effectively ending the discussion. ”

    Hmmm– isn’t collective punishment a war crime? And, are these ministers only concerned about their jobs because, clearly, they aren’t “serving the Palestinian population” at all.

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