Arab Idol winner gets hero’s welcome in Gaza


In this Saturday, June 22, 2013 photo released by the MBC Group, singer Mohammed Assaf is seen on the Arab Idol stage in Beirut, Lebanon. AP

RAFAH, Gaza Strip— The first Palestinian winner of the Arab Idol contest has returned to the Gaza Strip in a chaotic welcome by thousands waiting to catch a glimpse of him.

A convoy of cars drove through the crossing between Egypt and Gaza Tuesday afternoon. Mohammed Assaf’s manager, Wael Yazagi, confirms the singer has returned to Gaza.

Thousands more waited outside Assaf’s home in the Khan Younis refugee camp. Palestine TV broadcast the homecoming live, but there was no immediate sign of the singer.

Assaf’s weekend victory in the TV competition has given Palestinians a sense of pride and national unity.

However, Palestinian divisions were apparent during Assaf’s return to Gaza, ruled by the Islamic militant group Hamas. Devout Muslims consider TV singing contests as forbidden by religion.

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Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • crisostomo_ibarra_the3rd

    Ano? Bawal kumanta ang mga muslim? Napakarami namang bawal.

    • tanga_hanga_ni_abnoy

      bawal kumanta, pwede pumatay hehe

    • BCon

      In Saudi Arabia, pop music in public areas are not allowed by the religious police, even pipe in music in showrooms are haram.

      • crisostomo_ibarra_the3rd

        Ang dami namang bawal.

      • generalproblem

        sila kasi ang relihiyon na di sumusunod sa bagong panahon. ang alam lang nila ay yung lumang panahon kaya pati pag asawa ng apat ok pa din. saka yung sodomy gusto pa din nila yun kahit ayaw na ng gobyerno hehehe. kaya kung gusto mo na maraming bawal convert kana.

      • crisostomo_ibarra_the3rd

        Yoko nga doon. Ang daming bawal. Baka pati pagkain ng chocolate bawal.

  • BCon

    Whatever this news report is doing on the Philippine Inquirer.

    • skyla


    • Mux

      Because it’s the “Entertainment” section.

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