Israel: Israeli Palestinian journalists harassed and attacked

Israeli-Palestinian journalists have been attacked and harassed while covering demonstrations and clashes in Israel, according to a new report by the Ilam- Arab Center for Media Freedom . The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) calls on the Israeli authorities to investigate every incident to make sure all journalists can carry out their duties without being targeted or harassed.

Israeli security forces and Palestinian Muslim worshippers clash in Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque compound, the third holiest site of Islam, on May 21, 2021. AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP

The I’lam - Arab Center for Media Freedom, Development and Research is supported by Palestinian intellectuals and journalists active in the fields of civil society, media and research. According to its latest report, released on 26 May, Israeli security forces are responsible for most of the attacks  against journalists and media workers who were covering civilian demonstrations in the last few weeks in Arab Israeli cities as well as Jerusalem, despite them being clearly identified as media workers. 

The report documents 13 incidents where journalists were attacked, harassed or injured. 11 of these cases were committed by Israeli security forces, one by an Israeli Jewish mob and one case involved a journalist injured by shrapnel from a rocket launched by Hamas while covering the news near the southern city of Ashkelon.

  • Hassan Shaalan working for Yenet was attacked by security forces on 8 May while he was covering protests in Jerusalem.
  • Saher Ghazzawi from online media Mawteni News was attacked by security forces as he was covering protests in Al-Aqsa and was hit by a rubber bullet and injured.
  • Ramah Maufid from Musawa Channel was hit by a rubber bullet as she was reporting live on 10 May
  • Majed Daniel from Musawa Channel was attacked by police officers as he was covering the arrest of a young man in Haifa with his team and was banned from reporting. 
  • Mohamed Khatib from Musawa Channel was attacked by settlers who destroyed his car on 11 May
  • Racha Oumri working for Al Madina Newspaper was arrested at his home by security forces on 14 May for allegedly inciting violence
  • Freelance journalist Ahmed Azaiza was arrested by security forces at his home on 11 May for allegdely inciting violence
  • Anes Moussa from online media Oum Al-Fahem was hit by a rubber bullet as he was conducting a live interview on 11 May
  • Yanl Jabarine working for Haaretz newspaper and Mahmoud Jabarine from online media Oum Al-Fahem were attacked by security forces on 16 May while they were covering protests in Umm al- Fahm 
  • Wadih Awouda  from Al Quds Alarabi newspaper was threatened by security forces on 15 may
  • Ilyas Karam from Al Jazzera was injured by schrapnel  from a rocket launched on Gaza on 19 May
  • Sabrine Dyabe from Al Binaa newspaper Lebanon was arrested by security forces on 23 may. Her equipment was seized and she was prevented from communicating with her team. 

According to the testimonies collected, the Israeli security forces' attempts to eradicate journalists and prevent the media from reporting on the events aim to provide the official Israeli narrative with legitimacy and credibility in front of the world," the Center said. “Eradicating journalists is not only violating national and international laws, it also undermines the people’s right to know the facts, which it appears Israel is trying to hide.”

Ilam expressed its frustrations over the lack of response from several security agencies towards the protection of journalists.

IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: “All these incidents must be thoroughly investigated and those responsible must be punished. Israeli authorities must also listen to the concerns of Israeli Palestinian journalists to enable them to operate in a safe working enviornment and prevent future attacks.


For more information, please contact IFJ on +32 2 235 22 16

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