International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today accused the Hamas
Government in Gaza of intimidating journalists after a Gaza -based member of
the Palestinian Journalists' syndicate (PJS), Yousef al Ostaz was called in for
questioning over his activities in the union.
"This is an
outrageous interference in media affairs which must stop immediately," said
Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. "The Hamas authorities have no business to
investigate the role of an elected leader's work for his union. This reckless
behavior risks disrupting the important work the union is engaged in to unite
journalists in the West Bank and Gaza."
the PJS, the Hamas authorities in Gaza have launched an investigation in the
activities of Ostaz in the syndicat. Ostaz, who was elected on the PJS board in
the congress held in February 2010, has been questioned twice in three days,
says the PJS.
The IFJ says this
Hamas Government's investigation is the latest in a long list of measures which
undermine the development of independent and professional media in Gaza,
including the IFJ efforts to build solidarity between journalists in Gaza and
the West Bank.
Hamas stopped the streaming in Gaza by video link of a conference which was
taking place in Ramallah during the visit of IFJ delegation led by the Federation's President, Jim Boumelha.
called investigation is another attempt to frustrate the creation of an environment
which is conducive to professional journalism in Palestine," added White. "We
are determined to stand by our colleagues in Gaza who have to endure the Hamas
For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 07
The IFJ represents more than
600.000 members in 125 countries