Mon 27-May-2024

Euro-Med: 59 Palestinian journalists killed in Israel’s war on Gaza

Sunday 19-November-2023

Israel has turned its horrifying 44-day war on the Gaza Strip into a killing spree for Palestinian journalists deliberately focusing on targeting media professionals and offices in an attempt to impose a real and comprehensive media blackout on the entire Strip the Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said in a press statement released on Sunday. 

Until Sunday 19 November 59 Palestinian journalists were killed while dozens more were injured the highest-ever number of journalists killed in wars and conflicts in modern history.

The killed journalists belong to all media groups operating in the Gaza Strip including a correspondent for Palestine TV members of the official Palestinian News Agency and others working for local and international media outlets and institutions.

The Israeli escalation against journalists was accompanied by public incitement by Israeli ministers and officials who made unfounded and illogical claims that journalists had knowledge of the Oct. 7 attack in south Israel.

Former Israeli ambassador to the UN Danny Danon went further and called on the photojournalists to be added to the list of participants in the Oct. 7 operation and to be “eliminated” by the Israeli army.

According to Euro-Med Monitor Israel purposefully left no safe haven for journalists in the Gaza Strip. Journalists were targeted even when they were wearing press jackets in the field in press tents erected for media coverage next to hospitals or even in their family homes.

Similarly Israeli air and artillery attacks completely or partially destroyed at least 117 press offices. Additionally the vast majority of the 24 radio stations in the Gaza Strip were disrupted due to the Israeli frequent attacks or fuel shortage.

Israel also restricted satellite channels operating in the Palestinian territories including the Al-Mayadeen Media Network in Palestine. There was also a threat that the Al-Jazeera Network would suffer the same fate.

Euro-Med received identical testimonies from journalists expressing their fear that the media equipment they received from international organizations via Israel may include location-tracking and eavesdropping devices which may have facilitated their targeting during the war.

The Euro-Med Monitor confirmed that targeting journalists is considered a war crime under international humanitarian law. The UN Security Council Resolutions 2015/2222 and 2006/1738 condemn intentional attacks against journalists media professionals and associated personnel as such in situations of armed conflict.

Under Article 79 of Additional Protocol I of the Geneva Conventions which codifies a customary rule journalists in war zones must be treated as civilians and protected as such provided they play no part in the hostilities.

The Euro-Med Monitor concluded by calling for an independent international investigation into Israel’s crimes against journalists given its long history of targeting them whether in the West Bank or during repeated military operations against the Gaza Strip and to put an end to the impunity policy that led to an escalation in targeting journalists.

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