Report: Palestinian Authority Blocks Hamas News Sites

A Yemeni boy holds a mock rocket among others with Palestinian flags during a protest against the Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip and in solidarity with Palestinians on July 25, 2014 in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa. Israeli fire pushed the Palestinian death toll in Gaza to above 800 …
MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty

(AP) — The Palestinian government in the West Bank has blocked 11 news websites affiliated with Hamas and other political rivals critical of President Mahmoud Abbas.

An official at the attorney general’s office of the Palestinian Authority says the sites were blocked because they are in “violation of the rules of publications,” which forbid alleged fake news and defamation.

The official spoke anonymously Thursday because he was not authorized to brief the media.

The editor of Jordan-based Amad news website, Hassan Asfour, said in a statement that the censorship was due to its “bold reporting” on the Palestinian government’s “dirty deals.”

The internationally backed Palestinian Authority has tightened its grip in the West Bank since losing control of the Gaza Strip to the Islamic militant group Hamas a decade ago.

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