IFJ Calls on Israel to Release Journalists Arrested in Gaza

The

International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today condemned the arrest  of two Palestinian  journalists from Gaza who are detained by Israeli military

authorities since 5 January 2009 .

"We

demand that these journalists who are being unlawfully detained are released

immediately," said Aidan White, IFJ

General Secretary. "Israel

has no legitimate reason to detain journalists who are neither on its soil nor

involved in fighting in Gaza."

According

to media reports, Khadir Shahin, journalist for Al-Alam TV and his producer

were arrested by Israeli soldiers on Monday 5 January 2009 and have since been

detained in unidentified location.

The

IFJ has condemned the attack on the building housing media offices including

Al-Alam TV last Friday 9 January by Israel's war planes.

"By

harassing journalists and media organisations who have escaped the ban on

foreign journalists to enter Gaza , Israel makes plain its intention to prevent

proper and objective coverage of the conflict in Gaza," added White. "The

situation speaks more about unashamed intimidation and manipulation of media  than about

security consideration on the part of Israel."

The

IFJ yesterday called on the United Nations Secretary General to investigate violations of journalists' rights and other international law

provisions, especially the Security Council Resolution 1738 concerning the

protection of journalists and media personnel in conflict zones.

For more

information contact the IFJ at +32 2 235 2207

The IFJ

represents over 600,000 journalists in 123 countries worldwide