BBC investigates anti-Israel journalists after pro-Hamas social media posts

The BBC launched an investigation into some of its journalists who work for the network's Arabic service after it appeared they posted pro-Hamas and anti-Israel sentiments. 

According to The Telegraph, the BBC confirmed that one of the five journalists, Aya Hossam, will no longer work with the outlet, while Mahmoud Sheleib, Sally Nabil, Salma Khattab, Sanaa Khoury, and Nada Abdelsamad have been taken off the air as the investigation moves forward. 

The posts in question likened the Hamas terrorists who killed hundreds of Israelis to "freedom fighters" and described the attack as a "morning of hope." 

Hossam, a freelancer, liked a post that said, "Every member of the Zionist entity served in the army at some point in his life, whether men or women, and they all had victims of explicit violations… This term 'civilians' applies to the animals and pets that live there and they are not seriously at fault.” She later reposted a message with the phrase "the Zionist must know that he will live as a thief and a usurper" in it. 

One post, from broadcast journalist Mahmoud Sheleib, read, "[I see] In front of me on Al Jazeera, their so-called civilians are standing armed alongside the police and shooting because they basically don’t have any civilians among the youth." He continued, "This is what the ignorant often don’t know. I am in favour of fighting them with love, yes, this is the solution" with a laughing emoji after. 

Nabil liked a post that said, "A proud scene photographed by me," showing jeeps being loaded up with bodies and hostages during the October 7 attack. 

A BBC spokesperson told the outlet "We are urgently investigating this matter. We take allegations of breaches of our editorial and social media guidelines with the utmost seriousness, and if and when we find breaches we will act, including taking disciplinary action.”

The investigation comes just days after BBC journalist Noah Abrahams quit the BBC because of an editorial decision to not call Hamas "terrorist." He told Peter Cardwell on TalkTV, "British Jews are terrified."

"I’ve just made a really monumental career decision and life decision. So as with everyone, I’m going through a really hard time at the moment," Abrahams said. "I have morals and I stick by them. I think the words ‘justified’ and ‘unjustified’ have been thrown around a lot since the weekend and I think the BBC’s refusal to use the correct terminology is unjustified."

He bashed the outlet for using terms such as "gunmen" and "freedom fighters" to describe Hamas terrorists. "Words, quite literally, are fundamental to the English language. They impact how we think, how we react, and how we act. They have influence, the phrase ‘freedom fighter’ distracts from the reality of terrorism. To those easily influenced, it implies what is not. These people aren’t freedom fighters… they are terrorists" he said. 

Image: Title: BBC Journalist