Hamas government warns it will 'prosecute media' in Gaza

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

GAZA CITY The Hamas-led Palestinian Authority has for the first time threatened the media in the Gaza Strip.

The Interior Ministry's Executive Force announced a crackdown on media outlets that criticize the Hamas-led government.

"We will prosecute media that engages in lying and deception, and ignores the obvious realities," EF said in a statement on Thursday.

EF, which numbers 6,000 officers and is engaged in an ongoing war against Fatah, said it would prosecute journalists, newspapers, radio and television stations deemed partial.

The statement came in wake of the bombing of the Saudi-owned Al Arabiya satellite television in Gaza City on Jan. 22, Middle East Newsline reported. An unknown Islamic group, Righteousness of the Swords, claimed responsibility.

EF said it would also prosecute any media deemed as engaged in incitement against Hamas security forces. EF accused radio stations and websites of distortion.

"We find that the reality is [that they are] exposing allegations, thereby losing credibility in the eyes of our people," the statement said.

Copyright 2007 East West Services, Inc.

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