[News] World Press Freedom Day 2018: A Bleak Picture in the occupied Palestinian territory.

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Thu May 3 10:21:44 EDT 2018


addameer.org 
<http://www.addameer.org/news/world-press-freedom-day-2018-bleak-picture>


  World Press Freedom Day 2018: A Bleak Picture

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Today, 3 May 2018, on the occasion of International World Press Freedom 
Day, freedom of thought and expression remain a constrained phenomena in 
the occupied Palestinian territory.

While events are taking place around the world to commemorate the day, 
26 journalists currently sit in occupation jails, a poet has been 
convicted of incitement in an Israeli court, and the Palestinian 
Authority’s (PA) ‘Electronic Crimes Law’ remains a utilized piece of 
legislation.

Bushra Taweel, journalist and spokesperson for Aneen al-Qaid Network, 
remains under administrative detention after she was arrested in 
November 2017; as does Nidal Abu Aker, who hosted a radio show about the 
prisoner issue on the Sawt al Waheda station. Having been held under 
administrative detention on multiple occasions, Nidal’s current 
detainment has been ongoing since August 2016.

The situation is not much better for those Palestinians who hold 
citizenship from the occupying state. Palestinian poet Dareen Tatour was 
today convicted of ‘incitement to terrorism’ and ‘support for terror 
organizations’ after she published a number of poems on social media.

As for the ‘Electronic Crimes Law’ 
<http://www.addameer.org/publications/behind-firewall-repercussions-pa-%E2%80%98electronic-crimes-law%E2%80%99>, 
the majority of charges brought against journalists by the PA last year 
remain on the books without any progress in their cases. Additionally, 
Ahmad Awartani has remained in Jericho prison since his arrest on the 22 
April for a Facebook post.

Finally, the continued instances of occupation forces firing on 
individuals clearly marked as journalists in Gaza constitutes a severe 
violation of the special status afforded to the press.

For the whole of historical Palestine, the cause of press freedom looks 
bleak. For those who wield power, the one thing more dangerous that a 
material challenger is those who can propagate a resistance of 
consciousness. This is the exact role that a free press plays. It allows 
people to understand their political situation and, therefore, to chart 
a path forward. By inhibiting the freedom of press, not only is the 
freedom of expression stifled but so is freedom of thought. For without 
having a clear grasp on the reality, how can one begin to change it.

Addameer calls on both the occupying state and the Palestinian Authority 
to abide by their obligations under Article 19 of the International 
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to allow for freedom of 
expression and thought.

-- 
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