- Published on Monday, 18 June 2012 11:05
The recent five year anniversary of the division between Fatah and Hamas, on 15 June, was a fresh reminder of the impact of the division on the Palestinian people and the Palestinian media, the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) said today, Monday, 17th June.
MADA General Director Mousa Rimawi said a legacy of the division between the political parties was that most Palestinian media were biased in favour of one side.
The division had also led to repeated attacks on journalists and increased self-censorship by journalists.
Media freedoms had deteriorated since the 2007 division between Fatah and Hamas, Mr Rimawi said. In the past year, Palestinian violations against media freedoms (106 violations) exceeded those committed by occupation forces (100 violations). This year, media freedoms have further deteriorated.
MADA has renewed its call for an end to the effects of the political division on the media, beginning with allowing the distribution of newspapers throughout the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. This would be an important first step towards greater media freedoms.
Rimawi also stressed the need for journalists to remain independent in the face of on-going political differences between Fatah and Hamas. He said elements of the Palestinian media were responsible for enhancing the division between the parties and it was essential that the media now remained objective.