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Haaretz correspondent Amira Hass was detained by Sderot police last night for having entered the Gaza Strip without a permit.

By order of the army, Israeli journalists have been barred from entering Gaza since the abduction of soldier Gilad Shalit in June 2006.

Hass was stopped by soldiers at the Erez Checkpoint, on the Gaza-Israel border, as she was returning to Israel from the Strip. Upon discovering that she had no permit to be in Gaza, the soldiers transferred her to the Sderot police.

When questioned, Hass pointed out that no one had stopped her from entering the Strip, which she did for work purposes.

Chief Superintendent Shimon Nahmani, commander of the Sderot police station, said Hass had entered Gaza by sea three weeks ago.

Hass was released under restriction, and Nahmani said her case will be sent to court in the coming week.

Israel Press Council chairwoman Dalia Dorner, a former Supreme Court justice, commented that even journalists are subject to the law and the council cannot defend a reporter who breaks the law. Instead, she said, local journalists ought to petition the High Court of Justice against the army's order.