فارسي -  پښتو

DONATE

“MADA” demands an end to the occupation’s series of attacks on journalists

02/11/2013 – Ramallah: the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) condemns the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) direct attacks on Palestinian Journalists during their coverage of the peaceful masses in “Kana’n Village” in Hebron on Saturday 02/09/2013. The IOF assaulted, detained, and arrested the journalist present in the village. Those journalists are Associated Press photographer Nasser Al Shiokhe, French Agency photographer Hazem Badir, and two Reuters photographers Ma’moun Wazoz and Yosri Al Jamal. MADA also condemns the extension of the administrative detention of Shehab agency reporter Amer Abu Arfah.

The IOF arrested PalMedia cameraman Abdulghani Alnatsha for more than 24 hours, during which he was treated terribly. Alnatsha reported to MADA that he headed to cover the events in Kana’n Village, and at 10 am, a group of Occupation Forces approached him by surprise then dragged and arrested him. Once he was handcuffed, he was forced to sit until 12 pm. Then he was placed in a troop carrier for an hour in the heat. Alnatsha continued by saying: “around 3:30 pm I was taken, in addition to two international activists and three Palestinian activists, to the Kiryat Arba settlement area. There we stayed in the cold until 2 am of the next day, and then they took us to a military barracks and recorded our personal data and our fingerprints. Soon after we were taken to jail, stripped naked for search, then we were given prison uniforms to wear while awaiting our trial at Ofar Court around the midnight of Sunday”. The judge ruled a 4-month prison sentence for Alnatsha or a bail of 1,000 shekels (app. 270 $), he paid bail and was released. Alnatsha stressed that the treatment was very bad, whether by verbal harassment or leaving them in the cold and without food.

The IOF also detained Associated Press photographer Nasser Al Shiokhe for hours while he was at the village. Al Shiokhe told MADA “I headed with my colleagues to “Kana’n Village” to cover the events, and that’s when a group of Occupation soldiers approached us and assaulted my colleagues Eyad Hamad and Hazem Badir, meanwhile they arrested me and forced me to sit handcuffed for 6 hours, and I was released once the event was over. Al Shiokhe added “The IOF targets us heavily in all events systematically, we demand a major international movement to protect us”.

The French agency photographer Hazem Badir reported to MADA that one of the Occupation soldiers approached and hit him on the forehead with his helmet, which caused him bruises. Badir added, “he didn’t stop there; instead he sprayed me with filthy water, and he pushed my colleague from Reuters Yosri Al Jamal and Ma’moun Wazoz while shouting at them”.

On the other hand, "MADA" express condemnation and concern of the Occupation authorities’ extension of the administrative detention of Shehab agency reporter Amer Abu Arfah for the fourth time in a row since his arrest on 08/21/2011. His administrative detention was supposed to end and he was to be released on 02/19/2013.

MADA calls upon all international bodies to intervene immediately and rapidly to protect Palestinian journalists from the continued Occupation attacks on their rights. MADA also demands the release of Abu Arfah and an end to the administrative detentions against journalists. MADA emphasizes that the official international silence and lack of accountability at all occupation crimes against journalists in Palestine encourages committing more of them.