General Media Polices of The Palestinian Cause

General Media Policies Related to the Palestinian Cause

Media Policies Regarding the Israeli Occupation

Media Policies for the Global Discourse of the Palestinian Cause (1)

Media Policies for the Global Discourse of the Palestinian Cause (2)

Media Policies to Support Palestine in Digital Media

Media Policies Regarding Content and Media Format

Media Policies on Global Media

Discourse During Wars and Uprisings



General Media Policies Related to the Palestinian Cause

Journalists and Media Institutions’ Handbook on the General Media Policies Related to the Palestinian Cause

General Media Policies Related to the Palestinian Cause

This handbook proposes a set of policies for media discourse related to
the Palestinian cause, and proposes that journalists and press and media
institutions address them as follows:

  • The Palestinian cause and Arab-Israeli conflict should be presented
    realistically and holistically; i.e., as an existential battle of a nation
    under constant occupation. This is a nation that has suffered a Nakba
    (Catastrophe) and displacement for several decades. Palestinians are
    people struggling for self-determination, freedom, independence, and
    the return of their refugees to their homes. To this end, they should be
    represented as a people demanding the implementation of principles
    of dignity and human justice. Their struggle is not a conflict between
    equals, or rooted in a difference of opinion amenable to discussion
    and negotiation. On the contrary, Palestinians consistently face
    aggression, brutality and unchecked expansion, and this situation
    cannot be justified or accepted as a fait accompli.
  • Israel should be defined as an illegal entity in the region, and not
    a civil or democratic entity. It should be referred to as the “Israeli
    occupation,”“occupation entity,” “apartheid state,” “racist state” or in
    similar terms. This is based on the root cause of the issue, historical
    facts and principles of international law which Israel has not abided
    by. It also refers to the nature of the establishment of the occupation
    state, based on ethnic racism, historical myths and misinformation.
  • Semi-permanent space should always be reserved for new
    developments in the Palestinian cause at all levels in media institutions.
    Vigilance should be maintained in programming cycles and different
    productions, while developing methods to reach communities around
    the world, regardless of culture and language.
  • Terminology serving the Palestinian cause should be used, while
    terminology promoting the occupation’s propaganda and its agenda
    should be avoided. For instance:

“Security wall» should not be used in the place of“the racial
separation wall” or “occupation expansion wall.”
“Acts of sabotage” or “terrorist attacks» should not be used
instead of “acts of resistance”.
“Israeli Arabs” should not be used instead of “the Palestinians
of the 1948 lands,” or “the Palestinians in the lands occupied in

  • The geographical borders of Palestine are the historical borders
    demarcated under the British Mandate (historical Palestine), with an
    area of 27,000 km2.
  • Media and academic institutions should focus on the continual
    improvement of journalists, developing their skill sets so that they
    can carry out their responsibilities toward the Palestinian cause in an
    enhanced and more impactful manner.
  • The Palestinian cause should be spared from the disastrous effects
    of political, ideological, sectarian and ethnic conflict in the region.
    The status of the Palestinian issue should be reinforced as an Arab,
    Islamic, human, just and universal cause, and should not be reduced
    to a means of reason for political polarization and discord.
  • The rights of the Palestinian people to defend themselves and resist
    occupation should be emphasized. The difference between resistance
    and «terrorism» should be made distinct and clear, as“terrorism”is
    both offensive, and a grave misrepresentation. Attention should be
    paid to the issues that achieve the interests of the Palestinian people,
    such as their rights to:

Establish an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital
Freedom of worship in its Islamic and Christian holy sites
Freedom of expression
Freedom of political participation
Freedom of assembly in political or social groups
Freedom from imprisonment
Freedom of the press
Freedom of movement
Freedom of education
Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness

As stipulated by international covenants and conventions.

  • The international community should be held responsible for ending
    the injustice imposed on the Palestinian people, as they are a victim
    of political favouritism. The absence of global justice is a serious issue,
    and there is an international responsibility to achieve justice, end
    occupation, and protect the inalienable rights of peoples and nations.
  • Coverage should reinforce Palestinian national unity, and showcase
    a united front against occupation. Attention should be paid to avoid
    attempts at creating discord and disunity among the people. Blatantly
    partisan or sectarian tactics should be avoided. Differences of opinion
    should be covered, to give a chance for constructive dialogue and
    criticism, without taking away from the coverage of general affairs of
    the Palestinian people.
  • It is the media’s responsibility–at the local, regional and global level–
    to expose the crimes and violations of the occupation against the
    Palestinians, while double-checking every fact and verifying all details.
  • Journalists and media organisations should look at all published
    content on the Palestinian cause in Arab or global publications with a
    sceptical eye. Everything should be scrutinized. Misleading and false
    content should be identified, and should be professionally responded
  • The Palestinian issue should be seen as a human issue, necessitating
    that human stories should be told. Coverage should not focus on
    “newsy” elements of the news cycle, which turn the Palestinian issue
    into a litany of local Israeli crime stories. Instead, coverage should aim
    to reflect the humanity of the Palestinians, their suffering, struggles,
    and the violation of their rights and human dignity. Stories with a
    strong human voice include:

Detention of children
Bombing of unarmed civilians
Assault and battery of elderly
Detention of women, and mothers with new-borns
Burning down of houses and trees
Occupation-induced poverty
Misery endured at checkpoints

Media Policies for Covering Israeli Occupation

Based on the principle of rejecting occupation and refusing to
recognise its legitimacy or political and legal impact, and in the
context of supporting the Palestinian cause, we propose the
following media policies while addressing the Israeli occupation:

  • The Israeli occupation does not have officially demarcated sovereign
    borders, nor a constitution that restrains its expansive ambitions.
    When it is necessary to refer to geography or de facto borders,
    it is advisable to use the term “1948 Occupied Palestine” or “the
    Palestinian territories occupied in 1948.”
  • Highlight the occupation’s crimes, and the violations committed
    by its institutions and settler groups’ against Palestinian civilians
    in a way that demonstrates the criminality of the occupation and
    considers the sensitivity of the audience. This includes:

Collective punishment
Indiscriminate bombing
Suffocating siege
Deliberate murder
Arbitrary detention
Assault on children, women and the elderly
Inflicting permanent disabilities
Assault against civilians
Violations of human dignity
Violations of sacred sites (Islamic and Christian)
Confiscation of land
Home demolition
Setting fire to crops
Violating human rights

  • It’s important to make clear that settlers are not civilians. They are
    heavily armed, serve in the occupation army, and reside in settlement
    outposts in purely Palestinian areas and among the Palestinian
  • It’s advised not to host any official and non-official figures from
    the occupation community or Zionist figures, officials, or speakers
    possessing the occupying state’s citizenship and who support the
    occupation. It’s also advised that direct live broadcasting of press
    conferences held with the occupation’s leaders be avoided. Journalists
    and editors shall be content with addressing them in news bulletins
    and programmes, based on the editorial policies of each media
  • Pay special attention to the content, terminology and expressions
    published or disseminated by the occupation’s media. It is important
    to address them and edit them in order to avoid the influence of
    propaganda and bias in favour of the occupation. This must be
    carried out in accordance with professional standards, including, but
    not limited to, the explanation or definition of terms in parentheses
    within the quoted sentences.
  • Coverage should be provided for global campaigns boycotting the
    occupation state, with clarifications on the nature of these campaigns.
    People should know how to participate in the boycott, and the results
    achieved by it.

Media Policies for the Global Discourse of the Palestinian Cause (1)

Taking into account all of the above, improving the reach, impact and
presence of the Palestinian cause in global and regional media requires
attention to a number of media policies and standards, as follows:

  • Development and circulation of material suitable for various
    communities across the world, in various productions, art forms and
    formats, including photographs, drawings, caricatures, music, as well as
    Palestinian songs and media productions in numerous languages. This
    should be part of a bid to win hearts and minds, and touch base with
    common human denominators, while tailored to resonate with the
    culture, religion, ethnicity, environment and history of each region. It is
    also important to address the media’s political, social and intellectual
    elites in foreign communities due to their ability to influence their
  • Participate in international media festivals with competitive creative
    products that focus on the Palestinian cause and its aspects as part
    of their content. Focus on demonstrating Palestinian capabilities and
    competencies in various fields, in addition to highlighting the aesthetics
    of Palestinian art and artists. This should also be accompanied by
    developing joint initiatives, projects and programmes in this regard,
    while ensuring the integrity of content and freedom of expression of
    the just cause.
  • Benefit from prevailing global humanitarian values and pay attention
    to their discourse and expressions in a manner that considers the
    priorities of current media engagement throughout the world. Strive
    to integrate interest in the Palestinian cause by means of engaging
    with major events, such as international sports leagues and large art
    festivals, for example.
  • Expand and reinforce the relations of Palestinian journalists and media
    organisations on the ground through international media outlets,
    while enhancing media and press communication, cooperation and
    camaraderie in order to convey the Palestinian narrative to mainstream
    international public opinion.
  • Make sure to address the Palestinian issue, its major issues, details
    and facts from specific angles on regular periodic occasions, whether
    related to the Palestinian cause, such as the Nakba, Prisoners’ Day,
    Land Day, etc. as well as international occasions, or those specifically
    pertaining to certain regions of the world, such as those related to
    mothers, women, children, freedom of expression, honouring innocent
    victims, the environment, etc. This can be done through highlighting
    relevant aspects of the Palestinian cause.
  • Provide necessary clarification, detail and concepts for the general
    public outside of Palestine and its regional surroundings to understand
    developments and circumstances. Do not assume a general or
    working knowledge about details and roots of the Palestinian cause.
    It is important to link events and developments with their historical
    background to better provide context.
  • Contest and refute the occupation’s misleading propaganda at the
    international level, dismantling its pretexts. This should also include
    giving special attention to this effort during heated developments and
    escalations, while combating distortion and confronting incitement
    campaigns launched by the occupation’s propaganda outlets,
    spokespersons or those biased in its favour.

Media Policies for the Global Discourse of the Palestinian Cause (2)

  • In order to effectively scale discourse on the Palestinian cause from
    the local to global level, we must give vital attention and energy to the
    discourse’s content and how it engages with international audiences,
    while bearing in mind the following aspects and points:
  • The unity of the Palestinian domestic national position, in terms
    of the unity of Muslims and Christians, and some Palestinian Jews
    in their rejection of the occupation and their commitment to their
    national rights.
  • Any political settlement process for the Palestinian cause must be
    based on justice, which cannot be achieved without the end of the
    occupation and the restoration of all of the Palestinians’national
  • Focus on the racist nature of the occupation state, which is considered
    an escalated model of apartheid. This includes:

Construction of the racist separation wall in the West Bank
Confiscation of West Bank and Jerusalem territories by means of illegal                 settlement
Expulsion of Palestinians from their cities and villages using fabricated                  excuses and pretexts
Allowing settlers to move in to Palestinian areas and land
Passing discriminating laws
Exercising institutional discrimination against Palestinian citizens

  • The battle of the Palestinian people is directed solely at the Israeli
    occupation and does not stem from a hostile religious position or
    ethnic hatred. In addition to this, the concept of hating Jews, known as
    anti-Semitism, does not represent the Palestinian cause. It is actually
    foreign to the reality and history of Arabs and Muslims. Rather, history
    has witnessed co-existence with Jews and respect for their religion
    and places of worship.
  • Making sure to showcase the diverse social groups within Palestinian
    peoples, such as women, the elderly, children, and those with
    disabilities, as well as the various specialised and professional circles.
    Care should be taken to highlight the living patterns of Palestinians
    across Palestine, as well as their sacrifices and suffering under the
    occupation and its policies. This strengthens the chances for empathy
    and solidarity with the nation, as well as chances of reviving solidarity
    efforts across the world.
  • Exposing the occupation’s many human rights violations against the
    Palestinian people. Such violations require prosecution in international
    courts in order to achieve justice. It is also critical to focus on relevant
    information, details, reports and media materials.

Media Policies to Support Palestine through Digital Content

The policy and media content of the Palestinian issue in general, whether
in traditional media or digital media content, is consistent with what is
stated in this handbook. However, the inevitability march of technological
development and the ongoing digital revolution requires taking into
account the most appropriate means of addressing the public. When
covering the Palestinian issue digitally, it is important to bear in mind the

  • Ensure that media productions related to the Palestinian cause are
    suitable for publishing on websites and social networking sites.
    Suitable pages, platforms, and mediums should be established for this
    with a mind towards ease of access and broad distribution.
  • Support for the Palestinian cause on digital and social media platforms
    requires an understanding of the features and nature of these
    platforms, as what is suitable for one platform may not be suitable for
    another. Moreover, each has its own audience and demographic that
    needs to be addressed in a certain manner and method.
  • It is necessary to understand the community guidelines for digital
    and social platforms and formulate and create digital materials and
    content in a manner that prevents it from being removed or from
    accounts being shut down under the pretext of violating the policies
    of these platforms. Account censorship imposed on these platforms
    must also be taken into account, especially towards the Palestinian
    cause, when creating content.
  • Paid promotions and advertising targeting can be highly effective
    methods of reaching specific audiences, developing and retaining
    existing audiences or increasing reach. This necessitates a deep and
    thorough understanding of the possible sympathizing demographic’s
    psyche, spending habits, interests, as well as those of dedicated
    supporters of the Palestinian cause. Moreover, the use of advanced
    analytics and data in the study of engagement towards the Palestinian
    cause is a necessary and effective means of charting public disposition
    globally towards the issue, while identifying geographies of support,
    or their lack thereof.

Media Policies for Media Content and Format

  • The following policies are suggested for consideration by media
    and press organisations, related to media format and content when
    covering Palestinian affairs:
  • Present and highlight the suffering of Palestinians in news and media content as acts of resistance and self-defence.
  • Focus on presenting images of the Israeli occupation’s violations of
    civilians’ rights, especially during wars and armed clashes, in a manner
    that shows the occupation’s brutality on one hand and respects the
    dignity of the people on the other, without negatively affecting the
    psychological state of the audience.
  • It is important for coverage to include the political, social, intellectual,
    cultural and humanitarian aspects of the Palestinian scene based on
    the area and identity of each institution.
  • Reinforce the method of investigating and examining sensitive cases,
    especially in a manner that contributes to exposing the occupation’s
  • It is necessary to diversify media productions and formats to include
    news and humanitarian stories, reports, newsletters, documentaries,
    short films, op-eds, opinion pieces and news.
  • Remain open to all Palestinian, Arab and international trends,
    institutions, bodies, associations and parties, and address their media
    positions to serve the Palestinian cause in accordance with national
    principles and rights.
  • Respect all Palestinian parties and factions and their different views
    on the basis of unity in the face of Israeli occupation. Avoid pointing
    fingers or accusing bodies, parties, or individuals of treason.
  • Revive the idea that the Palestinian people are a cohesive and
    integrated unit, and ensure sure that coverage of Palestinian affairs
    remains balanced between the inside and outside of Palestine
    (Palestine, areas of refuge, and Diaspora).
  • Continuous reporting and publishing of developments of events,
    pictures and live video footage from the ground in Palestine, which
    holds a strong and influential media value, as with popular protests,
    arrests and other crimes committed by the occupation that do not
    require detailed explanations to engage with.

Media Policies on Global Media Discourse during Wars and Uprisings

The following media policies are suggested to contribute to
defining a coordinated global media discourse and content that
reflects the reality of Palestinians living under the occupation’s
aggression and wars, which are as follows:

  • Focus on moving humanitarian issues and stories resulting from
    attacks on the Palestinians, and utilize language that speaks to one’s
    emotions. Instead of only mentioning the number of martyrs, injured,
    and prisoners, include their names and produce stories about them,
    their families, and children.
  • Use visual effects, such as design, illustrations, and infographics that
    illustrate the rapid development of events in order to make it easy to
    understand and spread the details of the events.
  • Rely on live specialised and trusted Palestinian sources and adopt the
    Palestinian narrative from official and trusted sources. Do not quote
    military and security sources from occupation authorities or media
    except in specific cases following careful examination and editing.
    Allocate important space in various media outlets and platforms to
    the Palestinian cause and its developments (such as the front pages of
    newspapers, website homepages, and tweets on social media sites).
  • Focus on the magnitude of all forms of loss and damage left behind
    by the war and uprisings on Palestinians, examine and investigate
    their consequences, and portray the reality of Palestinians’ weak sides.
    Additionally, report how the basic necessities of life are threatened
    due to Israel’s attacks and violence.
  • Present the Palestinian resistance as an issue of self-defence and
    protection of Palestinians, who are faced with extermination and
    genocide at the hands of the Israeli occupation army. Ensure promoting
    the narrative that the resistance does not support war, but rather calls
    for ending it immediately.
  • Exhibit Israel’s military strength and capabilities in the form of its
    resources, missiles, aircrafts, and bombs, as well as its destructive
    impact on the ground. Support this with pictures and suitable media
    materials. On the other hand, do not overstate the capabilities of the
    resistance and its potential, focusing instead on the heroic stories of
  • Link Israeli military force with the support and armament of American
    and Western aircraft, and modern weapons of the occupation state,
    especially during times of war.
  • Adopt uniform terminology and continue to reiterate it, such as
    describing Israeli bombings or field killings of Palestinians as terrorist
    or inhumane acts.
  • Media productions should be tailored to social media and its policies
    and tools, and international and uniform hashtags related to Israeli
    aggression should be promoted and used.