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CNN Corrects On New Hamas 'Charter,' Gaza Unemployment


CAMERA's Israel office yesterday prompted multiple corrections of CNN's article yesterday entitled "What the Qatar crisis means for Hamas." As noted yesterday in CAMERA's Snapshots blog, the article twice incorrectly referred to a new policy document that Hamas issued on May 1 as a "new charter."
 
The first paragraph of the article originally stated:
 
 
Further down, the article repeated the error:
 

But as CNN correctly reported at the time, in the very article hyperlinked in the first erroneous reference to a "new charter," Hamas issued a new policy document on May 1, not a new charter. As CNN's May 3 article reported: "The Palestinian militant group Hamas unveiled a new policy document Monday . . . " The earlier CNN story repeatedly refers to the document as a "document" and not a charter, because it was not a "new charter."
 
Hamas itself refers to the new policy statement as "A Document of General Principles and Policies" – not a charter.

Hamas' own Mahmoud al-Zahar made clear that the new document does not in any way replace the founding charter of 1988. As Reuters reported:

One of Hamas's most senior officials said on Wednesday a documentpublished by the Islamist Palestinian group last week was not a substitute for its founding charter, which advocates Israel's destruction.
In response to communication from CAMERA staff, CNN commendably changed the references to "new charter" to "new policy document." The amended first sentence now states:
 

 
Likewise, editors replaced the second erroneous reference to Hamas' "new charter." It too now accurately refers to a "new policy document."
 

 
In a second, unrelated error, CNN's Ian Lee had incorrectly reported that according to the United Nations, Gaza's unemployment "hovers around 65%."
 
 
In fact, United Nations documents put Gaza's unemployment at below 45 percent, not at 65 percent. According to the "Gaza Situation Report, 197 30 May - 5 June 2017" published by UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East,
In the first quarter of 2017, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, the unemployment rate in Gaza stood at 41.1 per cent, one of the highest rates worldwide.
Also, according to this May 3 UN document:
In the fourth quarter of 2016, the joblessness rate stood at an average of 40.6 per cent – 68.6 per cent for women – according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS).
Editors corrected this point as well in response to CAMERA's request, changing Gaza's unemployment figure from "around 65%" to "over 40%."
 
 
In addition, editors commendably appended the following clarification and correction to the bottom of the article notifying readers about the changes:
 
 
 
One additional point that CAMERA raised with CNN concerns the article's claim that Qatar had not yet asked Hamas leaders to leave the country. The article reports:
Perhaps the most immediate sign of any acquiescence would be for Qatar to expel the Hamas leadership. Sudan or Turkey might be places of refuge if that were to happen, according to Hallyer.
"Until this moment, Qatar hasn't informed us of any decision to leave Doha," says Hamas's Barhoom. "We are welcomed in many countries. We had elections and will consider new arrangements. The residency of Hamas leadership might change according to a decision taken by the leadership itself."
Meanwhile, Haaretz reported on June 5 that Palestinian officials confirmed that Qatar did already ask Hamas to leave, although Hamas denies that report. Haaretz stated ("Palestinians Confirm: Top Hamas Officials Have Left Qatar at Country's Request"):
Palestinian sources have confirmed Monday that a number of top Hamas officials have left Qatar at the country's request, splitting up and moving to a number of countries, including Lebanon, Malaysia and Turkey.
Saleh al-Arouri, military commander overseeing West Bank terror cells, and Musa Dudin, who was released as part of the a prisoner exchange deal and established in Gaza a cell in charge of planning terror attacks in the West Bank, were among the officials who left Qatar.
For additional CNN corrections prompted by CAMERA, please see here.

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