Hamas police reportedly arrested a famous Palestinian singer-comedian in Gaza on Wednesday, allegedly following a critical song he wrote protesting the rampant power shortages that have plagued the Strip recently.
Adel Almashoukhi, who is a policeman as well as musician, was arrested in his Rafah home on grounds of “breach of the police ethical code.” He is expected to be brought before a military court.
He was recently arrested for writing controversial songs that Hamas described as “morally insidious.”
Critics have described his songs as “nonsensical” and “devoid of any artistic value.” However, many in Gaza believe that they reflect the malaise that has come to characterize life in the Strip.
Many have drawn links between his arrest and the string of demonstrations that took place across Gaza in protest of the increasingly encroaching power shortages. Power supply has gone down from eight hours a day to just three. Meanwhile, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank have been trading blows over who’s responsible for this mess.
Some on social media protested his arrest, while others welcomed it saying it would prevent him from writing more songs of “such poor quality.”
“Haha, they should have arrested him a long time ago,” Hanona tweeted. “It’s the only good thing Hamas police have done.”
Leena Shorafa agreed: “They should have arrested him a long time ago.”
“Can someone who employs someone like Adel Almashoukhi claim to be able to liberate Palestine?” Mohammed Abu Hashem wondered.
اللي بحط عقله بعقل #عادل_المشوخي ممكن يحرر فلسطين؟!!
— Mohammed Abuhashem (@Abuhashem_HRD) January 11, 2017
Sameh commented sarcastically: “No, that’s impossible! What about the freedom of expression that the Muslim Brotherhood are so adamant about?”
“I would like to understand how suddenly you made him into a ‘musician,'” Hanady Fayqe tweeted, referring to the quality of his music.
بس افهم من وين خليتو فنان 😑..
— Hanady Fayqe (@HanadyFayqe) January 11, 2017
In addition to Almashoukhi, at least 18 Gazans were arrested by Hamas after they advocated protest marches. Thirteen of them reside in Al Bureij and Nusseirat refugee camps, while others from Jabaliya in the north of the Strip.