Fatah movement says Facebook shut down the movement’s official page
The photo which reportedly led Facebook to close Fatah’s official page
RAMALLAH – The official Facebook page of the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) ruling party Fatah was shut down by Facebook Inc. on Monday, according to an official statement from the Fatah movement.
Munir al-Jaghoub, a Fatah official and the “administrator” of the page said in the statement that Facebook closed the Fatah’s official page after the group posted a photo of the late Palestinian President and Fatah leader Yasser Arafat alongside the current deputy chairman of the movement Mahmoud al-Aloul.
Arafat appears in the photo handing a rifle to al-Aloul. According to the statement, the rifle belonged to Israeli soldiers and was captured by Fatah militants in southern Lebanon during the 1982 Lebanon war.
The statement added that Monday’s incident was the second time Facebook has closed the Fatah movement’s official Facebook page.
In recent months, Israel has detained scores of Palestinians for social media activity, alleging that a wave of unrest that swept the occupied Palestinian territory in October 2015 was encouraged largely by online “incitement.”
In September, Facebook agreed to work with the Israeli government to “minimize online anti-Semitic incitement” — in an effort to pressure the social media site to coordinate to remove content considered to promote “terrorism.”
Israel had previously blamed Facebook outright for the perceived proliferation of incitement, with Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan reportedly saying that Facebook chairman and cofounder Mark Zuckerberg had “blood on his hands” for not adequately cooperating with Israel to remove content.
Earlier this year, the controversial “Facebook bill” passed the first reading in the Knesset, which would allow Israeli officials to force the social media giant to remove certain content through a court order if there are suspicions of “incitement.”
Despite Facebook complying with 95 percent of the Israeli government’s removal requests in recent months, some members of the Knesset have expressed indignation that Facebook has not taken enough action to remove content inciting “acts of terror against Jews.”
Meanwhile, Palestinians have instead pointed chiefly to the frustration and despair brought on by Israel’s nearly 50-year military occupation of the Palestinian territory and the absence of a political horizon as reasons for the outbreak of violence. Many Palestinians have also pointed out that Israeli violence has continued to shape everyday life in the occupied territory, regardless of any recent “upticks” in clashes or attacks.
No comments yet.