Hamas blocks two Saudi networks from operating in Gaza

Hamas blocks Al-Arabiya and Al-Hadath from operating in Gaza over allegations of false reporting.

Elad Benari ,

Gaza
Gaza
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Hamas has blocked two Saudi-owned news networks, Al-Arabiya and Al-Hadath, from operating in the Gaza Strip over allegations of false reporting, multiple sources said Thursday, according to AFP.

Hamas' “interior ministry” and Al-Arabiya both confirmed the ban, which was imposed over a report alleging that Hamas had arrested several of its members for collaborating with Israel and that one senior member of the group had defected to Israel.

A journalist who works with Al-Arabiya, who requested anonymity, said the order bars "anyone or any business from providing services" to either network.

Hamas initially denied that it has made a series of arrests among its members, but it subsequently admitted that a member of its Al-Qassam Brigades had indeed defected.

Al-Arabiya's office in Gaza was previously closed over a report concerning alleged ties between Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood.

However, it and Al-Hadath, which are Saudi-owned but based in Dubai, still work with freelancers in Gaza.

In a statement, the Palestinian journalists union denounced the reporting ban, saying "restrictions on press freedom and repeated shutdown of media" in Gaza were "contrary to national values and principles".



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