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Israeli forces shut down, ransack media companies in West Bank

RAMALLAH, October 18, 2017 (WAFA) – Israeli forces last night shut down and ransacked the headquarters and the district offices of two media production companies, citing incitement reasons, during raids in the districts of Ramallah, Nablus, Hebron, and Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank.

Israeli army raided and shut down the headquarters of PalMedia and TansMedia, two media production companies, in the central West Bank city of Ramallah. The shut down provoked clashes with local residents, during which one Palestinian was injured by an Israeli rubber-coated steel round.

In Nablus, in northern West Bank, Israeli army ransacked the district offices of TransMedia and PalMedia and ransacked their content and equipment. Army shut down the two offices for six months under a military order.

Clashes erupted with the army in the aftermath of the raid in Nablus, during which several Palestinians were reportedly injured, medical sources said.

Army further ransacked and shut down the district offices of PalMedia in the cities of Bethlehem and Hebron, in southern West Bank.

Also in Hebron, forces raided and ransacked the district offices of TransMedia and Quds TV. Meanwhile, the army arrested the director of TransMedia office in Hebron, Amer Jabari, and his brother, and Ismail Jabari, a cameraman.

The forces left posters stating that “incitement” was the reason for the six-month closures of the headquarters and offices of these media production companies.

Israeli authorities have long restricted Palestinian freedom of expression through censoring social media activity and imprisoning journalists, activists, poets, and novelists.

This is not the first time Israeli soldiers raid and shut down PalMedia and the other offices for alleged “incitement.” In July this year, Israeli forces raided and shut down the headquarters of PalMedia in Ramallah.

M.N

*Photo of Israeli army’s statement on closed media agencies. From Alquds newspaper, 18 October 2017.

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