CPJ welcomes the reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Reuters, and Agence France-Presse into the deadly October 13 strike on journalists in southern Lebanon, which killed Reuters journalist Issam Abdallah and injured six others and reiterates our call for an immediate, independent, and transparent investigation that holds the perpetrators to account.
Using witness testimony, satellite imagery, and analysis of videos, audio, and munition remnants, the human rights groups and wire services concluded that the attack was likely a deliberate assault by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) on civilians, which constitutes a war crime.
These findings echo some of those in CPJ’s May 2023 report, which showed a deadly pattern of IDF force that killed 20 journalists over the last 22 years. No one has ever been charged or held to account.
CPJ’s report found that at least 13 of the 20 journalists who died between 2001 and September 2023 were clearly identified as members of the media or were inside vehicles with press insignia at the time that they were killed.
As the Israel-Gaza war continues, on December 8, CPJ’s research showed that at least 63 journalists and media workers were among the more than 18,000 people killed since the conflict began on October 7—with more than 17,000 deaths in the Palestinian territories of Gaza and the West Bank and about 1,200 in Israel. This deadly toll on journalists’ lives is coupled with harassment, detentions, and other reporting obstructions as they go about their work across the region.
More coverage and photos of the war’s unprecedented toll on journalists
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has announced its new vice chair of the board, Lydia Polgreen, opinion columnist for The New York Times, and the addition of four leading journalists to its board of directors: Roula Khalaf, editor of the Financial Times; Alan Murray, chief executive officer of Fortune Media; Maria Ressa, co-founder of Rappler, and Jacqueline Simmons, editorial lead of Europe, Middle East, and Africa at Bloomberg.
“CPJ is delighted to announce Lydia Polgreen as the incoming vice board chair and welcome four distinguished journalists to our board,” said CPJ Chair Jacob Weisberg. “They represent a tremendous range of knowledge and experience, and share a fundamental commitment to press freedom and safety around the world.”
“Lydia’s decades-long experience as an international correspondent and as a media executive leading a team of hundreds of journalists worldwide makes her uniquely qualified to understand the challenges journalists face to report the news globally during a period of unprecedented attacks on the press,” said Weisberg.
“All four new board members are not only accomplished journalists but passionate about the role that a free press plays in the world. We look forward to working with them to keep journalists free and safe.”
CPJ’s board of directors is composed of journalists, media executives, and leaders from related professions in the United States and around the world.
We defend the right of journalists to report the news safely and without fear of reprisal.