Hamas Bans Gaza Restaurant From Screening Abbas' UN Speech

The party's General Investigations Service arrived at the establishment in western Gaza City late Friday and ordered the owner to stop the broadcast, threatening to close his restaurant.

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Hamas security personnel prevented a Gaza restaurant from screening Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' address to the UN General Assembly, a local rights group said Sunday.

Two men in plain clothing, who introduced themselves as members of the Hamas-run General Investigations Service (GIS), arrived at the establishment in western Gaza City late Friday and ordered the owner to stop the broadcast, threatening to close his restaurant.

Hamas police in Gaza in 2007.Credit: AP

The GIS members then contacted the Hamas police, who arrested the owner, the Gaza-based Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) said.

They also confiscated the ID card of a journalist who filmed the incident and refused to hand over his tape.

The restaurant owner had not been released by Sunday, PCHR said.

President Abbas spoke to the UN General Assembly last Friday, moments after he submitted a formal request for the United Nations to recognize Palestinian statehood. In his speech, Abbas urged Israelis to "come to peace" in order to save the two-state solution.

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