Gaza

Hamas bans novelist from leaving Gaza

How many of the Artists for Palestine UK will be protesting the ban that prevented Gazan novelist Atef Abu Saif from traveling to a book fair in Morocco, where he is a finalist for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction?

If it had been the Israeli authorities who prevented him from leaving Gaza, I imagine there would have been an outraged post on their website. Since in fact it was Gaza’s Hamas rulers who turned him back at the Erez crossing, I don’t expect to hear anything about it from them.

Read about how– quite independently of Israel– artists and writers are repressed in Gaza, including this interesting fact:

The Gallery Cafe once hosted literary seminars, poetry readings and music evenings on a daily basis. Poet Khaled Shahin, one of the owners, had to open in the new location after the cafe was bulldozed by the previous Hamas government before the eyes of its patrons.

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