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:
“We believe this decision upholds Israel’s own stated commitment to freedom of the press. The denial for such access in recent months represented a clear violation of that commitment and we are hopeful that such a situation will not recur in the future. This is a noteworthy decision for freedom of access to journalists in situations of conflict.”
The association quoted the court as saying that restrictions on media should happen “only in dire circumstances of concrete danger.”
CPJ repeatedly protested the Israeli ban on international journalists.