Geneva (QNN)- The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor sent a letter today to the United Nations, expressing deep concern at a recent decision by the Palestinian Authority to ban 59 Palestinian and Arab websites, including QNN websites.
“As you know, the PA banned 59 online news websites last week, based on article 39 of the controversial cybercrime law, instated by the PA in 2018,” the Euro-Med’s letter says, which was sent to Mr. David Kaye, UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression.
“[article 39 of the cybercrime law] allows the attorney general to flag any online outlets that endanger national security, general order and norms. The 59 websites in question were found to be critical of the PA president Mahmoud Abbas,” the letter states.
All banned websites are critical to the PA, while no Israeli websites are included. However, the PA claims that they harm the civil peace.
In 2017, a similar step was taken against nearly 30 websites, including QNN.
The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor also criticized the cybercrime law for its “ambiguous and elusive language”, which “enables the PA to take arbitrary measures against critical voices, press serious charges against them and sentence them harshly and disproportionately.”