Saturday, January 16, 2021

Peaceful protest of journalist suppressed by Israeli forces

By Ary Gotlib - November 19, 2018
Section: [Main News] [IN PICTURES]
Tags: [protests] [Israeli violence] [press freedom]

On November 17, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and Palestinian Journalist Syndicate (PJS) protested for freedom of press and in support of Palestinian journalists with a march to Qalandia checkpoint, a compulsory passage between Ramallah and Jerusalem.

Israeli forces repressed with tear gas the hundred demonstrators, even though they were identifiable with red IFJ press cards and press jacket.
Tens of journalists suffocated, PJS president Nasser Abu Baker was injured in his shoulder by a tear gas bomb.
According to Ma’an News Agency, a Colombian member of the IFJ executive committee  Adriana Hurtado and Manal Khamis, PJS member had to be transferred to the hospital, in a state of shock.
The PJS heavily condemned the suppression of the march of journalists towards Qalandia checkpoint.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) executive committee along with international and local journalists were gathered this weekend in Ramallah for media conference under the theme 'Journalists under Fire.’
IFJ wrote an open letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu where they described what happened.
“At about 100 meters from this important entry point to Jerusalem the Israeli army, with no warning and no discussion, fired around 10 tear gas grenades towards the group,” the letter stated.
The IFJ called for a response from the Israeli Prime Minister “to this unprovoked physical assault and to these violations of freedom of expression and freedom of movement.”
The protest was also an attempt to have the International Press Card recognized by the Israeli state.
The card is recognized by 145 governments worldwide but not by Israel, noted Wafa.
PJS confirmed that “the targeting of all free voices defending the Palestinian rights, and the poor attempt to obstruct journalists to do their duty to uncover the occupation’s crimes against Palestinian people, are clear messages to the world, that violence and power is the only logic that the state of occupation understands and practices.”
Bahran Belkhail, executive committee member of Kuwati journalists highlighted the importance of visiting Palestine, and exposing the particular working conditions of journalists in the country, reported Wafa agency.
According to PNN, Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) condemns the unjustified offense against Palestinian and international journalists by the Israeli occupation forces on Saturday.
MADA Center highlighted that international laws have guaranteed citizens the right to peaceful assembly and protest as a form of expression.
MADA Center, asks for all countries to pursue Israel for these crimes and attacks against journalists who try to do their jobs, within international organization such as United Nations.
Abu Baker, who’s shoulder was injured, stated; “In the last four years there were 3, 000 crimes committed against journalists, 26 of which were murders… It’s obvious that the Israeli leadership couldn’t accept our demand for freedom of movement, and the scene of IFJ being there, standing with Palestinian journalists.”
“No democratic state worthy of the name can react in this way,” he added.

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