Arab-Israeli reporter’s Facebook profile shut down after posts criticizing PA

Click photo to download. Caption: Khaled Abu Toameh. ( The Facebook profile of Arab-Israeli Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh was terminated “for security reasons” because, according to Facebook, he had posted an item that violated their terms of service.

Just prior to the termination, Abu Toameh had shared a post about the corruption trial of a former Jordanian intelligence chief and a link to a blog entry critical of the Palestinian Authority that he had written for the Gatestone Institute.

“The truth sometimes hurts,” Abu Toameh wrote for Gatestone. “That is why the Palestinian Authority has been working hard to prevent the outside world from hearing about many occurrences that reflect negatively on its leaders or people.”

Abu Toameh was inundated with hate mail and death threats, and his Facebook account was disabled shortly thereafter. Although his account was reopened 24 hours later, the two posts were deleted.

“Some people posted a picture of me with a Star of David on my forehead. This time it looks like a concerted campaign against me,” Abu Toameh said, according to the Jerusalem Post. “I find it strange that Facebook rushes to close [my profile] down without checking. Especially as a journalist, it really harms me; that’s my way of being in touch with my sources and my readers... Now we have to be careful about what we post and what we share. Does this mean we can’t criticize Arab governments anymore?”

Facebook did not respond to requests for comment.

Posted on January 16, 2013 .