Freedom of press faces danger due to continuous arrests in the West Bank
The Journalist Support Committee (JSC) expressed its deep concerns at the continued violations of media freedoms committed by the security services of the Palestinian Authorities in the West Bank, citing false pretenses, and using the new Cyber-Crime Law as a tool to proceed with the arrests, which constitutes an infringement of press freedom in Palestine.
The committee strongly condemned the arrest of Ayman Al-Qawasmy (45 years old), because of his demand of the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister, Rami Al-Hamdallah to resign for their impotence to protect Palestinian institutions. In addition, the Palestinian Preventive Security Service (PSO) arrested on Monday evening, a Palestinian activist, Issa Amro (37 years old), coordinator of the rally Youth Against Settlements in the city of Hebron, southern West Bank, on the pretext of a publication on Facebook.
The Journalist Support Committee stated on Tuesday, 5th of September 2017, that: "the continued arrests and summonses and citing false pretenses on journalists is a blatant infringement of Human Rights charters and international laws in force on Palestinian lands.
The Committee calls for a media campaign against the continued arrests, summons, detention of journalists, and calls also for the protection of journalists from these prosecutions, which has reached 43 violations in August alone, including 13 cases of arrests and summons. "This is a dangerous slope for the future of press freedom, free speech and the right to freedom of opinion and expression", said the coordinator of the committee in Palestine, Mr. Saleh Al-Masry.
The Committee urges the security services of the Palestinian Authorities in the occupied West Bank for the immediate release of the detainees, stressing the need for the PA to abide by laws and legislation that respect the right of journalists, to respect freedom of expression, to provide protection for journalists, to cancel all procedures that obstruct their work, and finally to commit to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966), and the Palestinian Basic Law.
Journalist Support Committee - Palestine
5 September 2017