Arab Tenants Who Paid Their Rent Were Not Evicted

[Guardian-UK] Rafael Broch - The eviction of two Arab families in eastern Jerusalem is an apt example of how an appetite for a certain type of story can create that story regardless of the facts. The two Palestinian families were evicted because Israeli courts had found that the land belonged to Jews, not to the Palestinians living there. In fact, there is a long legal history pertaining to the dispute between 28 Arab families and Jewish organizations over the ownership of the land in question. However, one crucial point was omitted from most of the reporting: the families were evicted for failing to pay rent in violation of the terms of their tenancy agreements. The Arab families who have kept to the terms of their tenancy agreement have not been evicted. It's all very well for the Guardian's Middle East editor, Ian Black, to describe the evictions as "the ugly face of ethnic cleansing." But without informing readers that the only people being evicted are the ones who refused to pay rent to the landlords they recognized decades ago, they paint a distorted picture. The writer works for "Just Journalism," an independent research organization focused on how Israel and Middle East issues are reported in the UK media.

2009-08-07 06:00:00

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