A group said that Hamas prohibited a demonstration scheduled on the anniversary of the Balfour Declaration in Gaza on Tuesday, Ma’an News reported. The protest was due to be held outside the United Nations compound in Gaza City. An official within the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front, Mahmoud Zaki, reported having received a phone call from a Hamas security official at midnight on Monday to inform him that the protest would be prevented from proceeding.
Zaki called the ban ‘a violation of freedom of speech.’, and stated: ‘We were surprised by the decision of the internal security to ban the protest where we wanted to deliver a speech on this occasion and hand over a petition to the United Nations in Gaza, something that does not affect [Hamas].’
The 1917 Balfour Declaration was a letter from British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour to Baron Rothschild, a British Jewish leader, declaring British support for the ‘establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.’