Journalists in Danger

Israeli forces strike Al-Manar TV facilities

The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on Israel to explain its attacks on Al-Manar TV, the satellite news channel affiliated with the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah. Al-Manar managing director, Ali-Al-Haji, told CPJ that Israeli aircraft fired two missiles today at the station’s headquarters in the southern Beirut suburb of Haret Hreik. Two employees were injured by flying glass, and a civilian in a nearby house was also wounded. The top floors of the building were severely damaged, al-Haji said. However, the station continued to broadcast. Israeli forces separately struck two Al-Manar TV transmitters, one near Baalbek, northeast of Beirut, and another in Maroun al-Ras in southern Lebanon. 

Seven journalists and media workers injured in Lebanon

Voicing concern about attacks on journalists in Lebanon in the past 48 hours and the lack of resources being deployed to protect them, Reporters Without Borders has called on the Israeli authorities to investigate the circumstances in which three journalists with the Lebanese television station New TV were injured on 12 July 2006. Reporter Bassel Al-Aridi, cameraman Abd Khayyat and assistant cameraman Ziad Sarwan were injured when their vehicle was hit by shots fired from an Israeli helicopter as they crossed a bridge in the south of the country, where they had gone to cover the fighting. This took place during an Israeli air raid aimed at cutting lines of communication and destroying bridges. 

Editors, journalists and media executives condemn shooting of two Palestinian photographers

The International Press Institute, the global network of editors, media executives and leading journalists, strongly condemns the shooting of two Palestinian photographers by Israeli forces in Gaza. Hamdi Al Khur, a photographer with the Turkish-based Ihlas News Agency, was shot twice by Israeli snipers on 7 July in Beit Lahiya. Mohammad Az Zanoun, a photographer with the online news agency Ma’an, was fired upon while photographing two Palestinians who had been killed in the invasion. 

UK court rules IDF shooting of filmmaker in Gaza was murder

The Committee to Protect Journalists today renewed its call for Israel to properly investigate the killing of a British cameraman in the Gaza Strip after a London court found that his shooting by an Israeli officer was murder. James Miller, an award-winning filmmaker, was filming a documentary about Palestinian children caught up in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict when he was hit by a single shot in the neck three years ago. London’s St Pancras Coroner’s Court concluded today that Miller was shot deliberately. 

Journalists attacked in Nablus by Israeli soldiers

The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by reports that Israeli soldiers have attacked Palestinian journalists covering unrest in the West Bank city of Nablus on at least two occasions this month. On April 17, soldiers fired at a group of cameramen and photographers covering an Israeli army raid on a house in the Old City of Nablus. The journalists said they were filming the raid, and clashes between soldiers and stone-throwing youths, from a distance of about 500 yards (meters), beside an AP vehicle that was clearly marked “Press.” They were wearing phosphorus green vests labeled “Press.” 

Palestinian PM urged to punish gunmen who attacked TV bureau

Reporters Without Borders condemned a 5 June 2006 attack on Palestinian national TV installations in the south of the Gaza Strip and urged Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh to put a stop to violence against journalists in the Palestinian territories. Witnesses blamed the attack on gunmen of the Ezzedine Al Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas. “It is essential that effective measures are taken to ensure the physical safety of journalists,” Reporters Without Borders said. 

Palestinian journalists attacked, threatened by leading factions

The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply concerned by attacks and threats against the press in the West Bank and Gaza Strip by suspected members of the two major Palestinian parties, the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), and the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Fatah movement. On Monday, nearly 50 armed militants stormed a studio of Fatah-affiliated Palestine Television in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip. The attackers ordered staff to leave, and beat several cameramen and technicians. They fired at the equipment and in the direction of employees. 

Israeli authorities restrict Gaza press access

The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply concerned about Israeli government restrictions on journalists attempting to report from the Gaza Strip. The Israel Defense Forces announced on Monday that Israeli passport holders and dual nationals would be prohibited from entering Gaza. “Due to the current security assessments journalists with Israeli citizenship or those holding a dual citizenship cannot enter the Gaza Strip at the present time,” a statement said. 

Ma'an news agency Gaza photographer shot and seriously injured

Young photographer Mohammad Az Zamoun was seriously shot and injured by shrapnel from Israeli projectiles. One hit his mouth and teeth and cut his finger. The other hit him on his body. In spite of that, he continued to work, strangely insistent. Then the Israeli soldiers aimed their weapons directly at him and shot him in the stomach. He fell instantly to the ground with his camera. Eyewitnesses said that he fell to the ground shouting, “Where is the camera? There are many photos in it which are witness to the killing of Palestinians; there are many photos of the Palestinians who have been killed.” 

Media watchdog calls for the release of three journalists kidnapped in Gaza City

Reporters Without Borders has voiced concern about the kidnapping of two French journalists, Caroline Laurent of “Elle” and Alfred Yaghobzadeh of “Sipa”, and South Korean journalist Yong Tae-young of KBS on 14 March in Gaza City, hours after an Israeli army raid on a prison in the West Bank city of Jericho. “We call on the kidnappers to free their hostages, who were just doing their job as journalists and can in no way be held responsible for Israeli army operations in the West Bank, and we call on the Palestinian authorities to do everything possible to locate them and ensure they are returned safe and sound to their families,” the organisation said.