Israeli Violations Against Journalists Increase by 17%

A total of 133 violations committed by Israel were recorded. (Photo: via Ma'an)

The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms, MADA, on Saturday said Israeli violations of media freedoms in the occupied Palestinian territory had continued to rise at a rapid pace over the first half of 2016.

The increase came even after the group reported an “unprecedented” increase in violations throughout 2015, which was “the highest ever to be monitored in Palestine” since the group started monitoring violations against media freedoms more than a decade ago.

MADA recorded a 17 percent escalation of violations by Israeli authorities during the first half of 2016.

MADA General Director, Moussa Rimawi, said in the semi-annual report a total of 133 violations committed by Israel were recorded, compared to 43 in the occupied West Bank and 22 in the Gaza Strip, committed by Palestinian authorities.

Rimawi noted that, “Israeli violations are considered as the most grave and dangerous,” not only in terms of quantity, but in terms of their severity.

Of the 15 different types of violations in MADA’s documentation, the top most common committed by Israel were physical attacks, arrests, confiscation of equipment, prevention of coverage, and detentions.

The most severe violation recorded during the first half of 2016 was the “execution” of the 22-year-old Palestinian journalism student Iyad Omar Sajadiyya, who was shot dead by Israeli forces in March during clashes that broke out when the military raided Qalandiya refugee camp in the occupied West Bank to extricate two soldiers.

Palestinian journalists were also exposed to 33 physical injuries from bullets, stun grenades, tear gas canisters, or beatings.

The report added that Israeli authorities closed two media institutions after ransacking and confiscated equipment from their offices, while 23 journalists and media workers have been detained between January and June of 2016.


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