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Gaza security releases female Palestinian journalist, activist from detention

April 24, 2017 10:42 A.M. (Updated: April 24, 2017 2:10 P.M.)
Taghrid Abu Tir
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Palestinian journalist Taghrid Abu Tir and local activist Ruwaida Muharib were released on Sunday after being detained by security forces in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, according to an anonymous security source in the besieged coastal enclave.

Abu Tir, who works with the Palestinian Authority’s official television channel Palestine TV, was arrested from her home in Abasan al-Kabira east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on April 13, spending ten days in custody.

The security source did not provide further details regarding the circumstances of Muharib’s arrest or the nature of her activist work.

The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) documented a total of 48 violations of media freedoms by security forces in the Gaza Strip over the course of 2016.

According to MADA, 2016 also saw a continuation of Palestinian authorities “prosecuting journalists in relation to their publications on social media sites,” in both the Palestinian Authority-governed West Bank, as well as in Gaza. Multiple incidents of both security apparatuses inflicting “certain types of torture” against Palestinian journalists during their detentions were also recorded.

MADA has highlighted that while a lower number of violations were documented in Gaza compared to the occupied West Bank, the trend was owing to the limited number of journalists and media centers operating in the small Palestinian territory, rather than heightened media freedoms.

According to the group’s annual report, a major reason behind media violations in the Gaza Strip was the ongoing political division between the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority and Hamas, the de facto ruling party in Gaza.
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