ABC journalists threaten strike over ‘pro-Israel’ lobby’s role in host’s sacking

The journalist’s dismissal came soon after her social media post alleging that Israel was using starvation as a weapon in Gaza.

WrittenBy:NL Team
Date:
A picture of journalist Antoinette Lattouf.

ABC journalists at the state-owned broadcaster’s Sydney office have threatened to go on strike over the firing of a journalist allegedly for her pro-Palestine views and her ethnicity, Al Jazeera reported.

Australian-Lebanese radio host and columnist Antoinette Lattouf was fired last month, only three days into her short-term contract. 

In its Tuesday edition, the news daily Sydney Morning Herald claimed that a chain of WhatsApp messages obtained by it revealed that a group called Lawyers for Israel had lobbied for Lattouf’s sacking.

The journalist’s dismissal came soon after she posted a Human Rights Watch report on social media alleging that Israel was using starvation as a weapon of war in Gaza. The broadcaster too had covered the report. 

Lattouf challenged her dismissal as unlawful, saying she was sacked on the grounds of “political opinion or a reason that included political opinion”. One of her lawyers, Josh Bornstein, claimed on X that the sacking was “based on both political opinion and race”.

Her case is due to be heard by Australia’s Fair Work Commission. In its defence to the commission, ABC denied that Lattouf’s sacking was connected to her race or political opinion. 

Several journalists across the world have lost their jobs or have been suspended over their stance on the Israel-Palestine conflict since October 7 last year, when the escalated fighting between Hamas and Israel began.

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