Page last updated at 11:58 GMT, Monday, 1 March 2010

Hamas extends British reporter Paul Martin's detention

Paul Martin
Paul Martin was arrested before testifying at a trial in Gaza

The Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas has said it is extending the detention of a British journalist being held in the Gaza Strip.

It announced Paul Martin would be held for a further 15 days.

The freelance reporter was arrested on 14 February as he prepared to testify in the defence of a militant accused of collaborating with Israel.

Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip, initially said he would be detained for 15 days.

His defence lawyer Sharhabil Zayim said he would have to either be charged or released after that, Associated Press reported.

Mr Martin has written for the BBC and the Times.

Hamas claims Mr Martin "committed offences that harmed the security of the country" but has not made public its accusations against the reporter.

Hamas is the Palestinian militant Islamist organisation that took control of Gaza after winning elections there in 2007.

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