PA President Mahmoud Abbas (C) at a meeting for the Central Council of the PLO, in Ramallah, March 4, 2015.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Palestinian Authority condemned the visit to Israel by seven Arab journalists and accused them of violating Arab policies that reject normalization with Israel.
The PA on Thursday called for punishing the journalists for allegedly supporting Israel, and said that normalization was an “unacceptable and unjustified disgrace.” Such visits, the PA added, are a “political and national sin and an unacceptable crime.”
A delegation of seven journalists of Arab origin visited the Knesset on Tuesday. The journalists work in France and Belgium, and some hail from Egypt, Lebanon, Algeria and Morocco. The Israel Embassy in France organized the three-day trip to Israel.
The PA Ministry of Information said that it “rejects all forms of media normalization with the Israeli occupation, which is considered an unacceptable crime.”
According to the Ramallah-based ministry, the visit of the Arab journalists to Israel “coincided with the fierce onslaught on our people” – a reference to Israeli security measures that came in response to recent terrorist attacks.
The PA took the journalists to task for meeting with Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein, and criticized one of them, who was quoted by The Jerusalem Post as saying that “the resurrection of the Arabs will begin with the voluntary and unfeigned recognition of Israel.”
This statement, the PA argued, exposes the visit’s “true agenda of normalization and support for the occupation’s narrative, which is full of falsities.”
The PA called on the Arab Journalists Union to take “firm measures” against the journalists for their alleged support for Israel and its “terrorism.”
The Gaza-based Democratic Press Association also condemned the Arab journalists’ visit to Israel, and said it was in the context of Arab normalization between Arab countries and Israel. The group called on Arab and international media organizations to boycott the journalists who accepted the invitational to visit Israel. It also accused the Arab journalists of “assisting the Zionist enemy in carrying out its schemes in the region.”
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