MONTREAL, July 29 /CNW Telbec/ - Reporters Without Borders demands the
immediate release of Sawah Abu Saif, a Palestinian cameraman employed by the
German TV station ARD. Saif was taken by masked men from his Gaza home on
25 July in a wave of arrests by Hamas following a car bombing earlier the same
day that killed six people.
"We condemn Saif's arrest, just as we condemn the arrests of all
journalists when they are arbitrary and unjustified," Reporters Without
Borders said. "Both Hamas and Fatah have for months been waging a vicious
battle with dire consequences for the Palestinian press. Journalists working
in the Gaza Strip who do not take orders from Hamas are often accused of
siding with Fatah and harassed."
The press freedom organisation added: "The leaders of Hamas should call
their members to order and should yet again tell them that journalists must be
allowed to work freely and without obstruction. And the ARD cameraman should
be freed at once."
Saif was arrested in his apartment in the west Gaza district of Tell el
Hawa by four masked men affiliated to the security forces of the Islamist
movement Hamas, who also confiscated his laptop and mobile phone. Hamas claims
that he is a Fatah supporter.
On 26 July, Hamas forces also arrested Fouad Jarrada of the Palestinian
government TV station and Amro Farra, a correspondent of the Palestinian
government news agency. In the West Bank, Fatah forces arrested Alaa el Titi,
a correspondent of the Hamas TV station Al Aqsa, and Mostapha Sabri, the
editor of the newspaper Falastin.
More than 50 journalists have been arrested in the Gaza Strip and the
West Bank since Hamas seized power in the Gaza Strip in June 2007.
For further information:
For further information: Katherine Borlongan, Executive Director,
Reporters Without Borders Canada, (514) 521-4111, firstname.lastname@example.org