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Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory


The Israeli Supreme Court announced today that international journalists must be allowed total access to Gaza in light of the official end of hostilities on January 18. Since November, the Israeli government has said that restricting the entry of these journalists has been for their own safety. Tel Aviv's Foreign Press Association called the claim "patently ridiculous," and today welcomed the court's ruling:

Although Israeli military operations have officially come to an end in Gaza, access for journalists has improved only marginally. Despite a December 31 ruling by Israel's Supreme Court (on the fifth day of military operations) to allow eight journalists to enter Gaza each time the Erez crossing was opened, the government failed to implement the ruling for 18 consecutive days--or in other words, until it declared a unilateral cease-fire. 

The United Nations has called on Israel to open Gaza to international journalists, a vital step that CPJ sought from the Israelis earlier this week. Yesterday, the U.N.'s chief of communications and public information urged the Israeli government to "ensure immediate access for international media into Gaza."

Today I spoke on the telephone with Ibrahim Barzak, an Associated Press correspondent in Gaza whose home was destroyed on December 30 in an Israeli strike. He now sleeps in his office and continues to file news stories. There is no downtime; with an Israeli ban on the entry of foreign journalists into the Gaza Strip, Ibrahim and other local colleagues are left with the gargantuan task of bringing the conflict to the world on their own.

As part of their military campaign in Gaza, Israeli forces seem to be targeting Hamas-affiliated media outlets, a practice that is of concern to CPJ. The Hamas-run broadcaster Al-Aqsa television was bombed on December 28, and then on January 5, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) appear to have hit the newsweekly Al-Risala as well its commercial printer. Fortunately, no one was killed in any of these attacks.

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Killed in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory

12 journalists killed since 1992

1 journalist murdered

1 murdered with impunity

Attacks on the Press 2012

2 Journalists killed in Gaza by targeted Israeli airstrikes.

Country data, analysis »


Middle East
and North Africa

Program Coordinator:
Sherif Mansour

Research Associate:
Jason Stern


Tel: +1 (212) 300-9018,
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فيسبوك : لجنة حماية الصحفيين بالعربية

Blog: Sherif Mansour
Blog: Jason Stern