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MSNBC Plunged Into New Controversy Over Its Israel-Palestine Coverage

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The MSNBC contributor who tore into the channel's coverage of Israel and Palestine returned to the airwaves on Tuesday night, only to find herself in a new controversy about her status at the network.

Rula Jebreal's contention that MSNBC was "disgustingly biased" towards Israel went viral on Monday and Tuesday, especially after she tweeted that her subsequent appearances on the network had been canceled. Jebreal was then booked on "All In," where she had a very contentious discussion with host Chris Hayes about MSNBC and the media in general.

Hayes asserted that MSNBC was doing a better job than most in covering the conflict in a balanced way. Jebreal heatedly argued that the network was still heavily tilted in favor of Israeli guests and Israeli perspectives.

The really interesting, though, was how MSNBC chose to describe Jebreal. During her Monday appearance, she was labeled an "MSNBC contributor." But, as observers on social media noticed, "All In" dubbed her a "Palestinian journalist":

This caused media watchers to wonder whether MSNBC had severed its ties with Jebreal following her criticism.

Speaking to "Democracy Now," Jebreal said her status with the network was unclear.

"I have no idea [if I've been fired]," she said. "I still don’t know. My contract is up, and we’re negotiating still."

UPDATE: MSNBC issued a statement on Wednesday saying that Jebreal has not actually been a contributor since last month:

Regarding the claim of cancelled appearances: Jebreal’s pre-booked daytime appearance on Tuesday was bumped to accommodate the re-airing of Chris Hayes' exclusive interview with Tariq Abu Khdeir, a 15 year old Palestinian American beaten by Israeli forces. Jebreal was a guest on "All In" with Chris Hayes on Tuesday night.

While we don’t publicly discuss contract specifics, Jebreal's contributor deal with MSNBC officially ended last month when she said she wanted to pursue new opportunities. We've welcomed her back on MSNBC several times since. Her voice is one of many Palestinian voices on MSNBC.

A spokesperson told the Washington Post's Erik Wemple that Jebreal had been incorrectly labeled a "contributor" on Monday.

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