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France 24 Suspends Four Muslim Journalists for Antisemitic and Pro-Terrorist Messages

In several messages, some praise Hitler, minimize the Holocaust, or glorify the Islamic terrorists affiliated with Hamas who killed thousands of Jews.

Four Arabic Islamic journalists working for the government-controlled France 24, the French international news channel, have been suspended after antisemitic messages they posted on social media were revealed. On its site, the chain published a press release on Sunday stating that “the management immediately opened an audit into these alleged facts, as it informed internally on March 10 after the publication of an article on the site of CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America), taken over by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, implicating a journalist and three Arabic-speaking correspondents from France 24 about certain remarks that they would have posted on their personal pages on social networks.”

In a lengthy investigation published on its site, the organization CAMERA shows that the four journalists did not respect the “code of ethics” of France 24. In several messages, some praise Hitler, minimize the Holocaust, or glorify the Islamic terrorists affiliated with Hamas who killed thousands of Jews.

“Our new investigation (…) reveals outright hatred and deep ignorance, which raises serious concerns about journalists whose salaries are paid by the French taxpayer.”

France 24 specified that “the four journalists concerned have been excused from activity pending the results of the audit,” stressing that “the ethics charter of France Médias Monde (France 24, RFI, MCD) provides that group journalists when they publish on blogs, forums, on social networks and any space dedicated to the public exchange of information, must ensure “the respect of professional and ethical rules (…) and not to violate the values ​​of ethics, independence, and impartiality of the company (…)”.

However, CAMERA reveals that the terminology used by the Arabic service of France 24, as well as part of its content, was subject to controversy, with in particular factual errors that the editorial staff stubbornly refused to correct: “Our new investigation (. ..) reveals outright hatred and profound ignorance, which raises serious concerns about journalists whose salaries are paid by the French taxpayer,” CAMERA explained on its site.

Joëlle Maroun: ‘If Only Hitler Was Lebanese’

The organization revealed in particular that Joëlle Maroun, France 24’s correspondent in Beirut since August 2021, had multiple tweets expressing her admiration for Adolf Hitler (“If only Hitler were Lebanese!” or “Get up, sir Hitler, get up, there are people who need to be burnt”), calls for the murder of innocent Jews (“It is incumbent on every Palestinian to kill a Jew and the case is closed”) and even more other nasty remarks.

Laila Odeh: Murderers as ‘Martyrs’

CAMERA also took aim at France24 correspondent in Jerusalem, Palestinian Laila Odeh, who covers Israeli and Palestinian affairs, accusing her of having “long allowed her anti-Israeli feelings to permeate her coverage, failing to meet basic journalistic standards of objectivity and accuracy.” At the same time, her brother was a Fatah terrorist killed in a clash with Israeli soldiers in 1970. In addition, she constantly glorifies the “martyrs” who targeted and killed civilians and calls the death “martyred” terrorists. 

Dina Abi-Saab: Cheers for Hamas Rockets

Lebanese Dina Abi-Saab has been France24’s Geneva correspondent since February 2016, covering U.N.-related issues, including matters involving Israel.

In the same time period, on social media, she celebrated rockets falling on Israel’s civilian population and whitewashed them “resistance;” blamed Jewish immigration to Israel (“Palestine”) as the source of all problems in the Middle East; like Odeh before her, she glorified Omar Abu Leila, who murdered a Jewish civilian, as a “martyr”; and likened the Israeli military’s bombing of empty skyscrapers in Gaza—occupants evacuated after receiving advance notice from the army—to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

It seems that even calling “Israel” by its name takes special effort for Abi-Saab. In December 2013, more than two years before she started working for France24, she wrote on Facebook:

“It might happen in the future that I will have to #apologize to Israel, since from now until death its name will remain Palestine from the river to the sea, and the names of villages and cities will stay Palestinian, and I haven’t stopped hoping it [Israel] is to be annihilated—this [Facebook] status is for safekeeping.”

Some seven years later, she stayed true to her promise, citing “the Lebanese border with occupied Palestine.”

Sharif Bibi: ‘We Will Eradicate You, Israel’

Lebanese Sharif Bibi, has been a France24 journalist since February 2014, Bibi assumed an additional position at InfoMigrants in 2017. (Along with the public broadcasting corporation of France, InfoMigrants and its Arabic-speaking subsidiary are owned and operated by the German Deutsche Welle and Italian nonprofit ANSA.)

“Notwithstanding his ostensible social-media preoccupation with human rights for migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers, Bibi seemed disconcertingly  unperturbed about the fate of Israel’s Jewish population in the event of the country’s annihilation,” reports EJ Press. He tweeted: “Hear ye – hear ye – hear ye – from the sea of the martyrs’ blood – from the effort of the red revolutionaries – we shall eradicate you, Israel, from your [very]roots.”

During his tenure as a France24 employee, Bibi delegitimized Israel as the “Zionist entity,” and likewise evaded saying Israel’s name by citing “Zionistindividuals and institutions.

CAMERA director Andrea Levin, however, praised France 24 “for quickly investigating this serious situation,” hoping that the channel “will cut ties with these apologists for Nazism and terrorism.”

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1 comment

  • Please explain how one can be said to “minimize” something that is not formally defined. In other words, “minimize WHAT?”

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