September 14, 2001, AP [6:09 PM ET] Bin-Laden Poster Seen at Gaza Rally,
Bin-Laden Poster Seen at Gaza Rally
The Associated Press
Friday, Sept. 14, 2001; 6:09 p.m. EDT
JERUSALEM –– About 1,500 Palestinians, many supporters of the Islamic militant group Hamas, marched in a Gaza Strip refugee camp on Friday, burning Israeli flags and carrying a large poster of Osama bin Laden, who has been named as a key suspect in this week's terror attacks in the United States.
After the rally, plainclothes Palestinian policemen questioned several journalists, including staffers of foreign news agencies, and confiscated videotape and film as well as camera equipment. An Associated Press Television News video was among the materials taken, and an AP photographer was warned by officials not to publish pictures of the bin-Laden poster.
AP protested and demanded return of the video and other material.
The journalists were told police would review the material before deciding whether to release it.
Officials of Yasser Arafat's self-rule government refused to comment on the record and did not respond immediately to AP's protest.
The Palestinian police said in a statement that the rally in the Nusseirat refugee camp took place without a permit. "The Palestinian police confiscated media material which documented illegal acts," the statement said.
The Palestinian Authority has sought to prevent coverage of demonstrations in support of those who carried out the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington.
Earlier this week, Palestinian police stopped camera teams and photographers from covering a rally in the West Bank town of Nablus in which several thousand Palestinians celebrated the attacks in the United States. Palestinian officials said the demonstration did not represent widespread Palestinian opinion.
Friday's march in the Nusseirat refugee camp in the Gaza Strip was led by supporters of Hamas, a militant group that has claimed responsibility for suicide attacks against Israel. Demonstrators burned several Israeli flags and effigies of Israeli politicians, including Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
A large Osama bin Laden painting was carried by two men in the crowd. Bin Laden, an exiled Saudi millionaire, has been named by U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell as a key suspect in Tuesday's terror attacks.
© Copyright 2001 The Associated Press
September 13, 2001, AP - Gadsden Times, Stopping Communication; Bin Laden Poster Raised At Gaza Rally: Palestinian police confiscate video, film of celebrations,