Israel urged to release satellite TV director
Published Wednesday 23/05/2012 (updated) 26/05/2012 23:48
Ibraheem Hamed, a Palestinian television cameraman from Watan TV,
stands in the station's studio in the West Bank city of Ramallah after an Israeli
raid closed the station in February. (Reuters/Mohamad Torokman, File)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities should release the director of a new Palestinian satellite broadcaster who has been detained since Thursday, the Committee to Protect Journalists said Tuesday.
"Israeli authorities should consider the message they are sending by imprisoning the head of a station that covers news about prisoners," said Mohamed Abdel Dayem, CPJ's coordinator for Mideast issues.
"Authorities should not be holding Bahaa Khairi Moussa, and certainly not without explanation. He should be released immediately, and the station's equipment should be returned."
Moussa, the general director of the Palestine Prisoner Channel, was arrested Thursday in Jenin. Soldiers confiscated his station's equipment during the raid, his colleagues said.
Reporters Without Borders, meanwhile, strongly condemned the arrest.
“Such abuses aimed at stifling the Palestinian media must cease,” the group said Monday.
“This is the third time since the start of 2012 that the Israeli authorities have victimized a Palestinian media organization. We call for the immediate release of Baha Mousa and the return of all confiscated equipment," the Paris-based group said in a statement.
It called the raid "illegal under international law" because it took place in Palestinian territory.
In April, soldiers shut down the officers of a new broadcaster in occupied East Jerusalem and in February, soldiers raided two Palestinian TV stations, Watan and Al-Quds TV in Ramallah.