Hamas bans New Year’s Eve parties in Gaza
Police have said that they will shut down any unlicensed parties because celebrating on New Year's eve goes against Gaza's values and religion. (AFP/File)
The interior ministry and police department in Gaza has refused to give any permits to venues wishing to hold parties on New Year’s Eve. Any unlicensed party will be closed down, AFP reports, after the territory’s police said that the celebrations offend Gaza’s “values and religious traditions.”
Police spokesman Ayman al-Batinji told AFP that several venues requested permission to host parties, however it was denied because celebrations are “incompatible with our customs, traditions, values and the teachings of our religion.”
Referring to recent violence in the West Bank, he added that parties were also forbidden in “solidarity with the families of the martyrs of the Jerusalem intifada.”
Since October 1, 136 Palestinians and 20 Israelis have died in clashes and attacks throughout Israel, Gaza and the West Bank.
In past years, restaurants, hotels and cafes in Gaza have been allowed to celebrate New Year’s festivities. The new year according to the Islamic calendar began in October this year, but parties and celebrations on December 31 are widely celebrated across the Islamic world.
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