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Hamas: Closure of Al Jazeera ‘a flagrant violation of press freedom’

The Hamas Movement has strongly condemned Israel’s decision to shut down Al Jazeera Channel's operations in Israel with immediate effect.

The Movement called the move “a flagrant violation of press freedom” and a retaliation over the channel’s role in exposing the ongoing Israeli crimes in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

“The closure of Al Jazeera TV is a repressive measure and retaliation for the channel’s professional role in exposing the crimes and violations of the occupation in Gaza and the [occupied] West Bank,” it added.

The Movement further said that the decision came as part of the Israeli war and the systematic targeting of journalists and media professionals.

Hamas also called on international human rights and press groups to “condemn it and take punitive measures against it.”

For his part, member of the Hamas Political Bureau, Izzat al-Resheq said the Israeli decision to close the Qatari TV channel expresses the state of hysteria and extreme confusion within Netanyahu’s government and inner cycle. “The decision also expresses the resistance’s victory, which Netanyahu is trying to hide.”

“This decision is a crime against the press freedom which are guaranteed by international laws, adding to the series of Israeli crimes against Palestinian journalists in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and Jerusalem,” al-Resheq added.

Earlier Sunday, the hard-line Israeli occupation government ordered the local offices of Qatar’s Al Jazeera satellite news network to close, following months of closure threats against the channel by premier Benjamin Netanyahu and his far-right ministers.

The Israeli order, which includes confiscating broadcast equipment, preventing the broadcast of the channel’s reports and blocking its websites, was issued in the midst of ongoing Qatari mediation efforts to end the war on the Gaza Strip.

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