For Immediate Release
CDFJ is gravely concerned over Israeli violence against Palestinian
journalists

Amman The Center for Defending Freedom of Journalists (CDFJ) has said in a
statement released today, October 3, that its gravely concerned over the
extended violence against Palestinian journalists during clashes and
demonstrations that erupted in Palestinian territories over the past four days.

The Center has said that Israeli violations against Palestinian journalists
reflects the Israeli position which is in severe conflict with principles
of democracy and respect for human rights, and violates treaties and
international agreements which Israel is a signatory.

According to various reports from media and independent sources, a number
of journalists have been beaten up as well as being exposed to live fire
from Israeli army forces while carrying out their duties covering clashes
and violence throughout the West Bank and Gaza. Some of news coverage that
Palestinian journalists have done exposed inhuman and violent practices by
the Israeli forces such as the deliberate shooting of the 12 years old
Mohamed Abu Dura in his father's arms.

Reports coming out from Palestinian territories have said that four
Palestinian journalists have been severely beaten up and physically
assaulted in the Aqsa Mosque in the first day of the Palestinian uprising.
Those were; Kahled Abu Aker who works for the French second channel, the
same channel that broadcasted footage of young Abu Dura, Awad Awad who
works for Agence France Press, Mahfouz Abu Turk and journalist Khaled
Zighari who has been reported to be taken to hospital after he was shoot by
live ammunition.

In the third day, both Amer Ga'abari and Mazin D'ana have been seriously
injured and were taken to hospital. Ga'abari has been reported to been
shoot by a bullet in the head. There have been no reports about the nature
and conditions of journalists Wa'el Shiokhi and Wafeek Matar who have been
also injured during the clashes.

CDFJ notes that the extension of violence against Palestinian journalists
by Israeli arm forces has become a critical phenomenon that should be
stopped. In September 1996, and during the clashes over the opening of the
tunnel under the Aqsa Mosque, the same kind of violence against Palestinian
journalists carrying out their work has been significantly reported.

The Center has also stated that repeated incidents where Palestinian
journalists have been targeted and assaulted in hot conflict zones, as what
has been substantially reported in September 1996 and September of this
year, should draw the attention of international and governmental
institutions and bodies to
the need to provide protection measures for Palestinian journalists
carrying out their duties in the West Bank and Gaza while forcing the
Israeli government to respect and comply with any set of international
conditions that points out to that.

CDFJ has called on all human rights organizations throughout the world to
condemn Israeli forces practices against Palestinian people and called for
a large campaign in solidarity with Palestinian journalists. The Center has
also asked international media to focus on exposing the current situation
in Palestinian.

The Center for Defending Freedom of Journalist is a not-for-profit NGO that
aims at defending and protecting journalists' freedom and rights. The
Center is based in Amman, Jordan.