MADA: The Occupation is Trying to Silence the Press in Gaza and its Crimes Against Journalists Must Not Go Unpunished

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PNN

MADA said in a press release issued on Sunday 18th November that journalists and media outlet headquarters were again targeted directly by the Israeli occupation forces to silence journalists covering events and the crimes committed by IOF in the Gaza Strip.

Sunday morning, the occupation forces targeted the offices of Al-Quds TV and Al-Aqsa TV in the Gaza Strip, causing injury to six journalists and a driver working for Al-Quds TV. Their injuries ranged from minor to medium, in addition to causing severe damage to their offices.

Imad Ifranji, director of Al-Quds TV in Gaza, told MADA that the Israeli occupation forces fired three missiles at the TV editing and filming department and at the eleventh floor of Burj al-Shawa – Husari at 1:30 am. IFranji added: "shelling caused injury to all in the office of photographers and assistants and a driver, in addition to significant damage in the section, in addition to damages in the ambulance that rushed to the place for the transfer of injuries, and damage to the TV car." According to IFranji, the injured included the following:

- Khader al-Zahar: amputation of his right leg from below the knee and bruising.

- Hazem Da'our: wounded by shrapnel and bruising.

- Mohammed al-Akhras: shrapnel fragments throughout his body. His injuries are considered of medium severity.

- Ibrahim Lapad: wounds and bruising.

- Hussein al-Madhoun: suffocation and bruising.

-Omar Ifranji: wounds in the foot.

- Darwish Bulbul: minor injuries.

Saed Radwan, programme director at Al-Aqsa TV, reported that Israeli Occupation warplanes targeted the broadcasting section on the fifteenth floor of the Alshorouq (sunrise) tower, in the Alrimal area of Gaza city at 6:30am. Severe damage was caused and most of the equipment and studios were destroyed. Radwan added: "one rocket penetrated the office of 'Palestine Media Production' actually on the fourteenth floor, causing damage".

Last Friday (11/16/2012) the occupation forces targeted the house of European Agency photographer Ali Ibrahim resulting in moderate injuries to his father (71 years), his sister (40 years) and her daughter (8 years), as well as causing extensive damage to their home. On the same day, occupation forces targeted the headquarters of "Free Media" in the Sheikh Radwan area of the Gaza Strip, almost completely destroying it.

The Israeli occupation forces killed Omar Mashharawi, the 11-month-old son of a BBC Arabic employee Jihad Mashharawi when his home was targeted on Wednesday.

The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) strongly condemns the renewed Israeli aggression in the Gaza Strip and the direct targeting of a number of journalists and media institutions. It calls for the need to protect journalists and prosecute the perpetrators of such crimes against the press and freedom of expression. The evasion from punishment of the Israeli occupation forces (which coincides with the commencement of global events to end impunity at the beginning of this month and culminating on the 23rd November) especially with regard to its crimes against the four journalists killed during the aggression on Gaza in 2009, enabled such occupation forces to commit further crimes against journalists and the media and demonstrates the urgent need to prosecute the perpetrators of attacks on freedom of the press.

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