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  • Israeli body that accredits journalists honored for propaganda

    The official Israeli government body that accredits journalists has just been honored by the country's PR association for enhancing Israel's image abroad. Anyone who values an independent and free press should be alarmed. The government bureau responsible for accrediting journalists in Israel was honored last month by Israel’s association of public relations professionals for its work promoting government propaganda, known cordially as “hasbara,” or “public diplomacy.” The Government Press Office, which is a division of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office, was presented the certificate of appreciation at the Israel Public Relations Association’s annual “Roaring Lion” awards ceremony. [tmwinpost] In an announcement…

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  • Israel expels Dutch journalist after he tweets +972 articles

    The Israeli government office responsible for accrediting journalists takes issue with a foreign correspondent sharing +972 Magazine articles on social media, publishing critical stories, refuses to renew his visa. Israel's Government Press Office has refused to renew the media accreditation for Derk Walters, a Dutch journalist who has been reporting from Israel-Palestine since 2014. Walters is the correspondent for NRC Handelsblad, a leading Dutch newspaper. Without accreditation he cannot renew his work visa, which means he must leave the country by July. The GPO has been critical of Walters' reporting, but not because it was inaccurate; instead, they seemed disturbed by the…

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  • IDF shuts down Palestinian radio station — but won't explain why

    The Israeli army shuts down the West Bank-based 'A-Sanabel,' claiming it incites against Israelis without so much as providing any evidence. Such is life under a military regime.  The Israeli army shut down Palestinian radio station A-Sanabel in the early hours of Wednesday morning, arresting five of employees and confiscating equipment. According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, the station was closed "due to inciting broadcasts." However, the IDF Spokesperson could not provide examples or statistics on such incitement. [tmwinpost] According to Israeli news site Ynet, A-Sanabel openly supported "harming Israelis," praised violent attacks, backed campaigns for rebuilding demolished homes of Palestinian attackers, and…

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  • A letter to our readers: On censorship

    From military censorship to the government deciding who is and isn't a journalist, Israeli authorities use various tools to interfere with the press. An important disclosure to our readers. When +972 Magazine was formed by a group of journalists and bloggers over five years ago, its founders decided that the site would not have an editorial line or political agenda save for three common denominators to which everyone was willing to commit: human rights, opposing the occupation, and freedom of information. The first two values are likely evident to almost anyone who stumbles across +972 Magazine, and certainly to regular…

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  • Editorial: Demanding freedom of movement and access for Palestinian journalists

    Palestinian journalists have published a petition aimed at pressuring Israel to grant them full freedom of movement and access in order to do their jobs, just as it allows Israeli journalists to work freely in Israel and Palestine. We at +972 support their petition and call on all of our Israeli and international colleagues to do the same. By the +972 Magazine and Activestills collectives For more than a decade, Israel has placed serious hurdles in the path of Palestinian journalists, often preventing them from covering the news in their own territory and at times even putting their lives at…

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  • Government Press Office doing PR for the settler movement

    It seems that every state agency in Israel is becoming a tool in the effort to further colonize the West Bank and deepen the control over the lives of Palestinians. Soon after the government reached an internal "deal" with the settler movement that would keep the families who settled in a so-called "illegal" outpost on the ground, the Government Press Office - once in charge of handling press cards and other bureaucratic duties - is now engaging in propaganda efforts on behalf of the settlers. A few days ago, the foreign press corps received the following mail, inviting members to an…

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  • 'Bra-gate': eyewitness account of humiliation at a media event

    Last week Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu – via Israel's Government Press Office (GPO) – hosted a reception for international correspondents at Jerusalem's David's Citadel Hotel.  I attended the event. The media were treated to an assortment of wine and hors d'oeuvres, a musical interlude performed by new immigrants, and then an address by the prime minister. In other words, it was a standard press event. But it ended up becoming an international scandal, dubbed 'Bragate' by the Israeli and international press, when several journalists walked out rather than submit to a security check that involved removing all their clothes. One…

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