“Journalists are never a legitimate target, either for violent attack or restrictions on freedom of movement,” IPI deputy director Anthony Mills said.
“We remind Israel and Hamas that journalists covering conflict have a right to do their job without being targeted, regardless of the political affiliation of the media houses they work for,” he said.
Both the Committee to Protect Journalists, or CPJ, and Reporters Without Borders, or RWB, sounded alarms over the Israel Defense Forces’ deliberate targeting of two media centers in Gaza City Sunday during the continuing Hamas-Israel confrontation.
“Journalists are civilians and are protected under international law in military conflict,” Robert Mahoney, New York-based CPJ’s deputy director, said in a statement. “Israel knows this and should cease targeting facilities housing media organizations and journalists immediately.”
Along the same line, Christophe Deloire, Paris-based RWB’s secretary-general, said in a separate statement: “These attacks constitute obstruction of freedom of information. We remind the Israeli authorities that, under humanitarian law, the news media enjoy the same protection as civilians and cannot be regarded as military targets.”
Deloire added: “We call for a transparent investigation into the circumstances of these airstrikes. Attacks on civilian targets are war crimes and serious violations of the Geneva Conventions. Those responsible must be identified.”
Pan to today:
An Israeli airstrike hit a Gaza building used by a number of local and foreign news organizations on Monday afternoon. Three top Islamic Jihad operative were killed.
Islamic Jihad sent a text message to reporters saying that Ramez Harb was killed in the strike Monday. The IDF spokesperson said four others — Baha Abu al Ata, Tyseer Mahmud Machmad Jaberi and Halil Baatini — used the building for hiding.
Harb was a leading figure in the Islamic Jihad’s militant wing, the Al Quds Brigades.
Witnesses said the strike hit a high-rise in downtown Gaza City which houses a few offices serving foreign correspondents.
Thick black smoke rose from the building Monday as ambulances rushed to the scene. Reports said as many as four people were killed.
The strike on the building was the second one in the past two days. The Hamas TV station, Al Aqsa, is located on the top floor.
This should tell you two main things:
1. The terrorists are using journalists as human shields. Duh.
2. Don’t rush to conclusions after an IAF strike that ostensibly looks unreasonable, because in some cases, the truth will come out