Taylor's FSLM Journals
Between the National and the Islamic: Representation of Jerusalem in the media coverage of HAMAS-affiliated Aqsa TV

@ SEARCH Journal of Media and Communication Research

Online ISSN: 2672-7080

Ihab Awais, Sujoud Awais & *Abeer Z. Alhossary


The issues of Jerusalem, the holy city, are of vital importance to the Palestinian media. However, Palestinian factions often attempt to cover the different matters of Jerusalem through their various media agencies and means. The coverage of Jerusalem issues is subject to the level of importance according to the agendas of these factions. One of the media outlets is Aqsa TV, which is associated with the HAMAS faction. The study aims to investigate the concept of Jerusalem presented via Aqsa TV’s coverage during 2018, which witnessed a number of intensive Palestinian-Israeli conflict struggles on the city. Also, the study aims to explore the degree of importance that the channel gives to issues concerning Al-Quds. As a qualitative research, it employed the content analysis method and the agenda setting theory to analyse the results. Data were collected from prime-time news broadcast in 2018, with a total of 24 broadcasts. The findings reveal that on one hand, the channel discourse prioritises matters related to the violent Palestinian-Israeli struggle that is taking place in the city while, on the other hand, ignores matters concerning the citizens of the city and their daily life problems. Another finding suggests that although the channel considers Jerusalem as the heart of the conflict, but in accordance with the agenda of HAMAS, the focus of the channel shifts to other fierce occurrences in the Gaza Strip Great Return March protests. The research recommends further studies to examine the coverage of different media outlets affiliated with other Palestinian factions to understand in-depth the agendas of these factions. In addition, the representation of Palestinian issues, such as refugees and the struggle with Israel, in both the Arabic language and English language to the local and international audience should be analysed and compared.

Keywords: Political agenda, media discourse, Aqsa TV, Jerusalem, and Israeli occupation