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MADA: 57 attacks against media freedoms during November, 49 of which committed by the Occupation

Ramallah (10Dec. 2018) – November has witnessed an escalation in the number and gravity of the attacks targeting media freedoms in Palestine in comparison with the preceding month.

 

In November 2018, the number of attacks monitored by the Palestinian Center for Development & Media Freedoms-MADA totaled to 57 attacks, 49 of which were committed by the Israeli occupation; while only eight attacks were committed by various Palestinian authorities in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. It is worth mentioning that the preceding month has witnessed 42 attacks committed by the Israeli occupation, 34 of which were committed by various Palestinian authorities in the West Bank and 8 attacks in Gaza Strip.

 

Israeli Attacks:

The Israeli Occupation Forces have significantly escalated their attacks against media freedoms in Palestine and committed a total of 49 attacks in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, most of which fall under the serious attacks against media outlets and journalists.

Most notably and serious among these attacks is destroying the headquarters of Al-Aqsa TV, composed on five floors, located in Gaza Strip, where 220 staff members are working. The resulting losses were estimated at about 4 million dollars (according to the director, Ibrahim Thaher).

 

In addition to destroying the headquarters of Al-Aqsa TV by the occupation army, eleven journalists were injured by the Israeli Occupation’s bullets and bombs while they were covering various events in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, namely: Ahmad Issam Shaqoura, injured by a rubber-coated bullet in his head, Ibrahim Ahmad Darwish Al-Madhoun, injured by a rubber bullet in his face, Tala’at Osama Tala’at Mushtaha, injured by a metal bullet below the knee, Rashid Saed Khaleel Rasheed, injured by a bullet in the left leg, Ahmad Khamees Jassir Hasaballah, injured by a metal bullet in his left arm, Safinaz Baker Mahmoud Allouh, injured by a metal bullet in her left hand, Mohammad Hazem Al-Masri, injured by a gas bomb fired directly at his face, Mohammad Yousef Mohammad Mohawesh, injured by gunshot fragments in his right leg, Ismail Khaleel Ismail Hamada, injured by a gas bomb in his face, Abdelraheem Abu Mahadi, injured by a gas bomb in his right arm, the American journalist, Stephon Lamont, injured by a rubber bullet in his leg while he was covering a peaceful march against settlement in Al-Mughayyir, in Ramallah, not to mention that few days prior his injury, he was also deliberately and directly shot by one of the settlers while he was filming a site threatened with the establishment of settlements, in Al-Mazraa Al-Gharbiya, where the settler arrived on a horse, and asked him, and his colleagues, at gunpoint to leave the site (he was carrying a Colt 45), then he started firing at them deliberately and directly, with the intention to kill or injure them. He fired 8 gunshots in fifteen minutes, all of them (including Stephon) ran to take shelter from the bullets behind a concrete wall “however, the settler fired two bullets, directly and deliberately at me, even though I posed no threat, as I was carrying my camera in my hand and my press card around my neck” as Stephon stated to MADA, stressing that it could have end with a tragedy.

 

Furthermore, the Israeli occupation police and army, during this month, have arrested four journalists. This is in addition to suppressing a march for journalists at Qalandya Checkpoint, at the entrance of Jerusalem, aimed at affirming the journalists right of movement, with the participation of a number of officials from the International Federation of Journalists, which led to the injury of at least nine journalists with severe suffocation, including Philip Lorient, the President of the International Federation of Journalists, Younis Mujahed, the Vice President of the International Federation of Journalists, Abdullah Al-Wahab Zughailat, the Head of the Freedoms Committee at the International Federation of Journalists, the journalist, Adriana, a member in the International Federation of Journalists Executive Board in Colombia, the Chairman of the Palestinian Syndicate of Journalists, Nasser Abu Baker, and a number of members of the General Secretariat at the Palestinian Syndicate of Journalists.

 

Palestinian Attacks:

In November, a total of 8 Palestinian attacks against media freedoms (three of which were committed in the West Bank and five in Gaza Strip) were monitered. This is a similar number to what has been monitered in the preceding month, October.

Five attacks were committed in Gaza Strip: summoning the journalist, Abdullah Issa Ibrahim Miqdad, and questioning him on the charge of “misusing the technology means”, summoning and detaining Ihab Al-Fasfous, and questioning him twice about his posts, preventing Palestine TV staff from covering two separate events. As in the West Bank, three attacks were committed, namely: preventing some journalists, by security officers in Ramallah, from covering a peaceful sit-in in solidarity with the Yemeni people protesting against the war in Yemen, damaging photographic equipment for a group of media students of Birzeit University who were about to prepare a training report for their Faculty.

 

Details of Attacks:

(1st Nov.) The Israeli occupation forces recently have carried out successive arrests in Al-Mazra'a Al-Gharbiya, Ramallah, apparently in connection with protests and demonstrations organized by its residents and several neighboring villages for several months against Israeli settlements targeting their lands and threatening to isolate their villages and turn them into cantons. These arrests have affected the journalist, Thaer Mohammad Shreiteh.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, a force escorted with several patrols, and around 50 soldiers of the occupation army, at 2:30AM, on Thursday, corresponding 1st Nov. 2018, has raided the house of the journalist, Thaer Mohammad Shreiteh, (33 years old), located in Al-Mazra'a Al-Gharbiya, north-west Ramallah. The soldiers asked all of his family members to gather in the outside of the house and began to search the house, which lasted about two hours. Then they arrested the journalist Shreiteh, his father and his brother and took them to a camp close to the village of Janniyah (also west of Ramallah). After about 4 hours, they took them to Ofer camp in Betunia, Ramallah. They were interrogated by the Israeli intelligence and the district officer known as Diab for about two hours. The journalist Shreiteh, his father and his brother were brought together and threatened to destroy their home if their third brother Maher did not surrender to the Israeli army. At 7:00PM on the same evening, about 14 hours after they were arrested, they were released. They were also asked to go to the occupation intelligence in Ofer Camp, on Sunday, corresponding 4 Nov. 2018, they indeed went on the scheduled day and waited about 3 hours until they met the district officer, Diab, “3 hours until we met the officer, "Diab," who re-threatened them to arrest them and raid the house. They were released after about two hours.

It should be noted that the journalist, Shreiteh was arrested by the Israeli Occupation on 28 March 2018, and he was detained for several days in Ofer prison.

 

(1st Nov.) An occupation force has arrested the journalist, Nidal Naem Abu Aker, (50 years old), the presenter of Al-Wihda Radio programs, in Dheisheh Camp, attacked and beaten him and his family members, at dawn, on the 1st of Nov. The journalist, Abu Aker, stated to MADA “at 5:00AM, at dawn, on Thursday, corresponding 1st of Nov. 2018, an occupation army force composed of about 80-100 soldiers has raided Dheisheh Camp, where I live. Part of the force  were deployed on the roofs adjacent to my house and across the neighborhood, while around 12-15 soldiers have attacked the building where I live, smashed the door of the first floor, and after I heard the sounds of breaking-in, I opened the door and waited for them in the third floor, where I live. They entered the house brutally and assaulted all of my family members (my wife, my daughters, me and my son) with their weapons. My daughters’ hands were wounded, and my head was hit against the wall three times. Some of the house furniture was broken while they were trying, by force, to get my wife and daughter in the bathroom. I tried to find out why they were attacking us and if they wanted to arrest me or my son Mohammad, but they did not answer and they kept beating us. After about 20 minutes in the house, they handcuffed our hands by plastic bands, blindfolded us, and took me and my son, Mohammad, out of the house on foot for a distance of 300-400 meters while the beatings and insulting continued and we were taken in separated jeeps to Etzion Center, where we arrived at about 6:30. We stayed there until 09:00, during which we were taken to another place inside the detention center. At around 09:30AM, I was handed over to another army unit and stayed there for half an hour. After that, I was sent to the nearest point to area (a) in a jeep, and I was released. I arrived home at 10:00AM, while my son, Mohammad, remained in detention”.

 

(2nd Nov.) Al-Mazra’a Al-Gharbiya, located 10 kilometers to the northwest of Ramallah, has been witnessing demonstrations every Friday, each month, to protest against the establishment of a settlement road in Na’alan Mountain (part of the neighboring village, Al-Mazra’a Al-Sharqiya) to connect Talmon Settlement with a settlement outpost called Kerem Ra’em, as part of the settlement of Talmon.

On Friday morning, corresponding 2nd Nov. 2018, dozens of activists from Al-Mazra’a Al-Gharbiya went to the lands threatened with confiscation and reached the peak of Na'alan Mountain. At approximately 10:30AM, vast forces of the Israeli army, border guards and Israeli intelligence officers arrived and asked everyone to leave the area, including the journalists. One of the occupation officers (speaking in English and Hebrew), addressed Palestine Today TV reporter, the journalist, Jihad Ibrahim Barakat, (29 years old), and Al-Ghad TV photographer, Mohammad Al-Khateeb, to leave Na'alan Mountain area considering it a “closed military zone”, and he showed them a decision issued by the occupation army and asked them to show their personal identity cards. He threatened them to arrest anyone who does not leave the area (did they leave or not .. what has happened). After Friday prayers, at around 12:50PM, clashes erupted between a group of Palestinian demonstrators and the occupation forces in that area. The soldiers fired tear gas bombs and rubber bullets at the demonstrators. A group of journalists, wearing the press vests and helmets, and holding the press badge, were standing at a distance of 100 meters away from the soldiers to cover the events. Three soldiers of the border guards, in their dark green uniforms, approached them, while the smoke of the tear gas bombs was covering the area. They started pushing the journalists to the back and prevented them from covering the events. In other words, they hampered their work and did not allow them to leave where they came from. The journalists were left in a middle ground between the demonstrators and the soldiers. This has affected the journalists: Munther Mohammad Shahadeh Al-Khateeb, the photographer of Al-Ghad TV, Abbas Abdelwahhab Al-Momani (47 years old), and the photographer of “Al-Hayat Al-Jadida” Newspaper, Issam Huda Al-Rimawi (35 years old), Anatolia Agency photographer, Hisham Kamel Abu Shaqra (30 years old), Al-Ghad TV photographer, Diaa Ahmad Housheya (36 years old), Palestine TV photographer, Shamekh Jareh Al-Jaghoub (38 years old), Iran TV photographer, Khaled Ali Sabarneh (47 years old), Ayat Khaled Arqawi (29 years old), Al-Quds Net Website photographer, Abdalrahman Mohammad Mousa Younes (32 years old). Iran TV photographer, Khaled Sabarneh stated “the soldiers violently and aggressively pushed us away, until they left us in the middle ground between the tear gas of the occupation army and the stones of demonstrators”.

 

(4th Nov.) Some security elements of Hamas in Gaza Strip have prevented Palestine TV staff from covering the release of prisoners from Israeli jails when they left Beit Hanoun Erez checkpoint at the entrance to Gaza Strip.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the Director of Reporters of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation “Palestine TV”, the journalist, Fuad Kamal Masoud Jarada (35 years old), the TV photographer, Mohammad Ziada Issa Nassar, and the producer Yousef Ahmad Mohammad Abu Maghsib, on the afternoon of 4 Nov. 2018, have went to Beit Hanoun checkpoint to cover the moment of arrival of prisoners released from the Israeli occupation jails. At around 03:00PM, the reporter, Fuad Jarada, has asked for a permission from those at gate 4/4 to have access to gate 5/5 to capture and film the moment when the prisoners meet their families closely. However, Hamas police officers refused; therefore, the producer, Yousef Abu Maghsib, contacted the Media Department Director at the Ministry of Interior, Bader Al-Deen, who promised to facilitate the process. However, this did not happen, and the producer again contacted Bader but the later did not respond to his repeated calls, so he sent him a text to his phone, and he replied that he is trying to communicate with the officer in charge of the gate. A few minutes later he went back to Hamas security officers at Gate 4/4. Their response was that the entrance of the Palestinian TV staff to gate 5/5 to film the prisoners was subject to the approval of the PA intelligence services on the entry of Al-Jazeera photographer. Abu Maghsib contacted Palestine TV Administration in Ramallah to contact the intelligence services, and the later approved to allow Al-Jazeera photographer to enter the gate. But Palestine TV staff was not allowed to enter Gate 5/5. Therefore, the staff returned after waiting about two hours without covering the event.

 

(5th Nov.) The Israeli occupation forces detained the reporter and the photographer of Al-Ghad TV in Hebron and deleted the press report they were preparing and working on.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, on Monday, corresponding 5 Nov. 2018, after Al-Ghad TV staff, including the reporter, Raed Mohammad Sameer Rateb Al-Sharif (35 years old), and the photographer, Jamil Hashim “Mohammad Jamil” Salhab Al-Tamimi (26 years old), completed and finished shooting north of Hebron, to prepare a report on the detainees of Hebron Governorate, three Israeli soldiers have stopped the staff at the Israeli Military Tower located to the northern entrance of Hebron, separating Hebron from Halhoul, at around 2:40PM, on that day (Monday, corresponding 5 Nov. 2015), and addressed them in Hebrew and English “shooting in that area is prohibited”, and they forced them to turn on the camera, claiming that the photographer has taken pictures of the military tower. The soldiers checked the identity cards of Al-Tamimi and Al-Sharif, and seized them to get them to leave the site. After one hour and 40 minutes of detention, the soldier deleted the filmed material off the camera, gave them back their cards, and allowed them to leave at 4:20PM.

 

(7th Nov.) Israeli forces raided the house of the volunteer journalist working for WAFA News Agency, Ibrahim Mohammed Awadallah, (30 years old), at midnight, searched the house and interrogated him. Awadallah said: "I was surprised at 12 o'clock in the middle of the night on (7th Nov. 2018) that our house in Al-Walaja, which is a few meters away from the Apartheid Wall in Bethlehem, is surrounded by six Israeli patrols. At first, an intelligence officer dressed in civilian clothes, wearing a military vest, came to my uncle's house and introduced himself in the name of Adnan. He asked him about me and told him that he knew I live in the first floor and immediately went to the first floor and asked my father about me. The officer entered our house with no less than ten soldiers. They searched the house, in particular my room and my brother's room, and messed around with all of the rooms’ objects. They also seized a collection of my books, including my books of Bethlehem Bible College, and a scenario of documentary films for my brother, who works as a journalist for the American TV, DeepDesh, and he is on a visit at the present time. They wanted to seize a set of hard discs but did not do so after I told them that they belong to my brother. They also wanted to seize my brother’s American identity card. I was asked to start up the laptop, they searched it and accessed the files on it as well as some videos, some pictures of the Scouts, some of my pictures while volunteering in the Civil Defense and some of my media coverage. I was questioned by the officer about my previous job at MAAN Network and my former PNN job. He also told me that they had been tracking me for two years. He accused me of encouraging citizens in Al-Walaja to take part in marches, so I can cover some events even though I told him that I am a volunteer only at WAFA.

Awadallah stated that six months ago he received a phone call from the Israeli intelligence against the backdrop of a post on his Facebook account which stated that “After the intransigence of the Zionist occupation for three months to prevent the paving of the main and only entrance of Al-Walaja, Al-Walaja Village Council, with the support of the families of the village and its foundations, has paved the road against the will of the occupation”, and that “after discussion about this post, I hanged up the phone on the officer at the time, so the officer told me today, after taking all of my phones’ numbers, that I must go meet them at any place whenever they ask, and about an hour later, they left the house”.

 

(10th Nov.) The journalist of the Palestinian Center for Media Production, Ahmad Issam Shaqoura, was injured by a rubber-coated metal bullet in his head, fired by an Israeli soldier, while he was covering a demonstration as part of the peaceful return marches, east of Beit Lahia, in Gaza Strip.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the journalist, Ahmad Issam Shaqoura, a single man, born on 24 July 1993, from Al-Sheikh Radwan neighborhood, Gaza Strip, a holder of Press and Public Relations Certificate through a training completed with Palestine Today TV, works for the Palestinian Center for Media Production P.M.P., has arrived at the afternoon of ….. to the area located against Zikim military site, northwest of Beit Lahia, Gaza Strip, accompanied by his coworkers, the photographer, Ramzi Abu Amer, and the reporter, Huda Hijazi, staff members of the Media Production Center, to cover the events of day 15 of the “Maritime March/Al-Maseer Al-Bahri”, taking place there as part of the peaceful return marches, which have erupted several months ago in Gaza Strip. It should be noted that Shaqoura has been covering these events since last July. At around 3:35, while he was covering the event, located at a distance of 230 meters away from the separating fence, to the other side of which the Israeli soldiers were deployed, and while he was shooting the events with a Nikon Camera, the occupation soldiers fired a barrage of tear gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at the demonstrators, which led to his injury by a rubber-coated bullet on the top of his head. Immediately, he fell to the ground, some paramedics transferred him to the field medical point of the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, established to the north of the demonstration, where he received first aid and then he was taken to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia. He arrived the hospital in …… minutes, where his head was imaged, and the doctors found that his injury was moderate. He was discharged at 4:25PM.

 

(11th Nov.) Some Israeli soldiers have prevented Reuters photographer, Mousa Issa Al-Qawasmeh and the European Agency photographer in Hebron and Bethlehem, Abdel-Hafiz Diab Al-Hashlamoun from covering a demonstration in Al-Fawwar camp, detained and threatened them with arrest if they covered the demonstrations.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, on 11th Nov. 2018, several marches and demonstrations were witnessed in some of the Palestinian cities, towns and camps, throughout the West Bank, for the purpose of commemorating the death of the Palestinian President, Yasser Arafat. As part of these demonstrations, there was a march taking place in Al-Fawwar Camp, Hebron. Reuters photographer, Mousa Issa Al-Qawasmeh, and the European Agency photographer in Hebron and Bethlehem, Abdel-Hafiz Diab Al-Hashlamoun, at around 02:00PM, on 11 Nov. 2018, went to Al-Fawwar Camp to cover the march. Few minutes after their arrival, the occupation army prevented them from shooting, seized their personal identity cards, and their press cards, and took them behind the military tower, located at the junction of Al-Fawwar Camp, south of Hebron. The Israeli soldier returned the identity to the photographer Mousa, about ten minutes later, but kept the photographer, Abdel-Hafiz in detention down by the tower for more than an hour and a half, after he asked them how they knew about the clashes in the region (the demonstration). At approximately 02:00PM, the soldier returned the identity of the photographer Abdel-Hafiz, where the demonstration and clashes have ended in the area, and threatened them (in English) with arrest in the event of "taking part in any acts of disrupting order".

 

(12th Nov.) The Israeli army has bombed the headquarters of Al-Aqsa TV in Gaza with several missiles fired by Israeli warplanes, a few minutes after a telephone call from an Israeli army officer informing them with the army’s intention to destroy the headquarters, and asking them to evacuate it.

According to the statement of the journalist, Saleem Muhsen Al-Sharfa, the presenter and producer of programs at Al-Aqsa TV, to MADA field researcher, the journalist (Al-Sharfa) has received a phone call from a private number (did not show the caller number), at around 8:20PM, on Monday, corresponding 12 Nov. 2018, on his way back home from work at the TV headquarters, the caller introduced himself as “Abu Daoud” from the Israeli Intelligence, and asked him where he was? The journalist Al-Sharfa replied that he was at home, as he has just arrived home then. The Israeli officer asked him to tell his coworkers to evacuate the TV headquarters as it will be bombed by the Israeli warplanes in ten minutes. Al-Sharfa asked him about a proof of his sincerity, the officer replied “when you see the missiles of the aerial reconnaissance aircraft you will be certain, and bear the liability of your coworkers’ lives if you do not tell them, now you go and step by each room and tell them to evacuate the headquarters”. Immediately after the phone call, Al-Sharfa contacted his coworkers and indeed told them to evacuate the headquarters, and he found that the same caller has contacted some of his coworkers at the headquarters as well, namely: the Programs Director, Imad Zaqout, the anchor, Islam Bader, and informed them to immediately evacuate the headquarters as it will be bombed. Immediately, the staff of the headquarters began to leave. Before leaving, the "warning" reconnaissance missiles were fired at intervals around 8:30PM. About eight "warning" missiles were fired at the headquarters in about half an hour. At 9:00 an F16 aircraft began targeting the headquarters with four missiles fired intermittently until 9:25PM, which led to the full destruction of the headquarters, including the equipment, as the staff could not take out anything. Furthermore, the destruction of the headquarters caused damage to the citizens’ houses near it. The TV transmission interrupted completely for few minutes, but Al-Aqsa TV soon began to resume broadcasting from elsewhere. MADA researcher who witnessed the bombing of the headquarters from the very beginning has monitored that a reconnaissance plane targeted the headquarters with eight missiles and about two minutes between each missile and the other, before the F16 war planes fired four missiles which completely destroyed the headquarters. The director of Al-Aqsa TV, Ibrahim Thaher, has stated to MADA researcher that the headquarters "consists of five floors with a total area of 1000 square meters (half of which is the studios), and that about 220 staff members are working in it. He estimated the losses incurred as a result of the destruction of this headquarters by about four million American Dollars. He emphasized that the time given to evacuate the headquarters was not sufficient. Not to mention the great number of staff members who were not able to take out any of the heavy equipment and machinery, which led to their destruction and damage as well”. This is the second time in which Al-Aqsa TV headquarters is destroyed, as the last time it was bombed was during Gaza War 2014.

 

(14th Nov.) Some Palestinian security officers in civilian clothes have prevented journalists from covering a sit-in in solidarity with the Yemeni people, organized in the center of the city of Ramallah, not to mention that they broke the equipment of a group of female journalists, while the police officers who were present refused to intervene and protect them.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, on Wednesday, corresponding 14 Nov. 2018, some activists have organized a sit-in in Al-Manara Square in central Ramallah in solidarity with the Yemeni people, against the war waged by the Arab coalition led by Saudi Arabia three years ago and the resulting humanitarian tragedies. The demonstrators have raised signs condemning what they called “the aggression against the Yemeni people” and that it has to be stopped. While a number of journalists went to cover this sit-in, including the journalist, Nizar Adimoun Habash (34 years old), who works as a reporter for WATAN Agency, with its headquarters in Ramallah. While the journalist, Habash was live broadcasting to WATAN TV page, two persons in civilian clothing approached him and prevented him from doing his work or continue broadcasting and they asked him to switch off his phone. He immediately asked them who they were and they told him that they were security officers, even though they had forcibly prevented him from filming and continuing to do his job. As to the media students of Birzeit University, Lama Ayman Samhan (20 years old), Siwar Abed Rabbo (20 years old), and Maha Al-Sheikh (20 years old), they have arrived to the area to prepare a TV report as required by one of their courses. A person in civil clothing approached them and asked them not to film anything (at that moment, they were about to film/using a stand/in front of the camera to cover the event), he threatened to destroy their camera. When Lama asked him who he was, he refused to answer, and again he asked them to do what he said. They then went to a police officer who was at Al-Manara square in his official uniform and told him that someone had harassed them while they were filming a training report. The police officer told them to do what that person asked them to do. They moved 30 meters away from the area, close to the parking near Palestine Bank and tried to set up the “stand” again, “but immediately the young man, in the civilian clothing, returned back to us and broke the camera and the tripod (This has caused damage to the camera lens, completely, as well as the microphone which fell to the ground), and then he quickly left". The student, Lama, followed him and asked the police to stop him because he had destroyed their journalistic equipment. One of the police officers, in his official uniform, addressed her “I do not want to hear anything, and asked one of his colleagues to take him – the person who assaulted them - away from the area very quickly” as Lama stated. At around 5:30PM, “we asked the police present in the area, at Al-Manara square to protect us, and they told us to go to the police headquarters, in Ein Musbah, near Ramallah, to file a complaint”. When they went to the police headquarters, the police officers “kicked us out and told us to go to the general investigation office to file the complaint”.

 

(16th Nov.) The journalist, Ibrahim Ahmad Darwish Al-Madhoun, was injured by a rubber bullet in his face fired at him by one of the Israeli occupation soldiers while he was covering the events of the peaceful return march in Malka, east of Gaza Strip.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, Ibrahim Ahmad Darwish Al-Madhoun, (23 years old), a single man, Palestinian and holding I.D. Card No. (400884227), a freelance journalist, has arrived at around 2:30PM, on Friday, corresponding 16th Nov. 2018, to Malka, located on border (with Israel) east of Gaza, to cover the events of the peaceful return march, organized each Friday, since the 30th March 2018, to break the siege on Gaza Strip. He was wearing a blue vest marked “Press”, he has borrowed from one of his colleagues, and he was carrying his own camera. When he arrived, he saw a crowd of unarmed citizens, arriving to the place to take part in the march. Immediately after the afternoon, around 3:00PM, as usual, the number of demonstrators increased significantly. Al-Madhoun began taking photos of the demonstrators and kept pace with their approach towards the border, while the Israeli occupation forces were randomly firing gas bombs, rubber and live bullets at the demonstrators and staff (…does this include the journalist as well). At around 04:00PM, while he was covering the events at a distance of 100 meters away from the “first” spiral metal wire and around 200 meters away from the second wire, behind of which the occupation soldiers were deployed, dozens of meters behind earthen berms, he heard the sound of gunfire coming from the occupation soldiers, and suddenly his vision went blank and he felt imbalanced which is why he leaned on a young man next to him while others gathered around him and realized at that moment that he was wounded in the face. Later it turned out that he has been injured by a rubber bullet. The young men then took him to the ambulance which was close to the site where he was, and immediately transferred him to the field hospital, located about 500 meters away from the border, where his injury was examined by the doctors and they assured him that his eye was not injured, and there are no fractures, and that the injury is basically below the left eye (left cheek) and that the lack of vision in his eyes is caused by the swelling of the injury. He was given some painkillers, and his injury was dressed with bandages. He stayed about 20 minutes in the field hospital under health supervision and then he was discharged to have some rest at home provided he shall continue dressing the injury. Indeed, at around 4:30PM, he left to home, and he was still suffering from blurry vision and pain. On the following day, corresponding 17 Nov. 2018, the vision improved and returned normal and most of the swelling disappeared, but he continued to feel pain in the place of injury for several days.

 

(17th Nov.) Palestine TV staff members have suffered suffocation as a result of the gas bombs fired by the Israeli occupation forces at the staff while covering the event of planting olive trees in lands threatened with confiscation in Urif in Nablus on 17 Nov. 2018.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, Palestine TV staff, including the Director of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation Office in Nablus, Abdelnasser Sadat Ahmad Ibrahim (52 years old), the TV reporter, Baker Mamdouh Mohammad Abdelhaq (29 years old), and the photographer, Loay Abdelhafeeth Aref Samhan (38 years old), have went, before the afternoon of 17 Nov. 2018, to Urif, located 12 kilometers south of Nablus, to cover a peaceful demonstration called for by the Commission against the Wall and Colonization, and the Coordinating committees for the cultivation of olive trees (is there a party concerned with the olive trees planting activity in the lands threatened with confiscation in Urif) whose lands and residents are constantly subjected to settler attacks. When they reached Urif, the staff was surprised with the occupation army surrounding the area where the event is planned to take place and preventing them from approaching. However, the TV staff approached to cover the gathering, and the occupation army began to fire a barrage of tear gas bombs at all demonstrators and towards the journalists and media crews who were close to Urif School, as well as towards those taking part in the planting of olive trees. This has resulted in the injury of the Director of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation Office in Nablus, Abdelnasser Sadat Ahmad Ibrahim with suffocation and severe shortness of breath, especially since he already suffers from asthma. He was immediately transferred by an ambulance and treated in the field by giving him muzzles and voltaren for breathing. He remained in the ambulance for about half an hour. In addition, his colleague, the photographer, Loay Samhan, was injured at the same time and he was given the first aid by a number of paramedics near him who ran and gave him oxygen and other materials to reduce gas suffocation. His third colleague, Baker, was able to leave the area immediately after the soldiers fired gas bombs which reduced the chance of his injury.

 

(17th Nov.) Nine journalists, including the president and vice president of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the chairman of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, were severely suffocated as a result of the Israeli army's repression of journalists at the entrance of the City of Jerusalem to emphasize their right to movement and to protest against the Israeli attacks on media freedoms in Palestine.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the International Federation of Journalists (with its main headquarters in Brussels) decided this year to transfer its annual meeting to the city of Ramallah to hold it as a kind of solidarity with the Palestinian journalists. Therefore, the members of the International Federation's executive board arrived to the city for this purpose and to participate in a conference prepared by the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate to take place in parallel with the meeting of the International Federation under the title "Journalists in the crossfire”. At about 12:00 PM, on 17 November 2018, (one day before the annual meeting of the International Federation of Journalists), the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate organized a peaceful march at Qalandia Israeli military checkpoint, which separates Jerusalem from the West Bank, to protest against the Israeli attacks against media freedoms and to emphasize the right of journalists to movement. More than 40 journalists, including a number of Arab and foreign journalists who arrived to Ramallah to take part in the meeting of the International Federation and the scheduled conference, went to Qalandia checkpoint at the northern entrance to Jerusalem, and they were wearing blue press vests and carrying international press cards in their hands. At Qalandia refugee camp, adjacent to the barrier, a press conference was held in which it was explained that the march was aimed at protesting against the Israeli attacks and crimes targeting journalists in Palestine and to emphasize their right to movement. After about 15 minutes, at 12:15PM, they proceeded in a march holding the international press cards in their hands, the president of the IFJ Philip Lorient, took part as well in the march, in addition to the vice president of the IFJ, Younis Mujahed, and the chairman of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, Naser Abu Bajer, with the participation of dozens of Palestinian journalists and members of the IFJ’s Executive Board. When they were about 300 meters away from Qalandia checkpoint, soldiers from the Israeli border guards began firing a barrage of tear gas bombs by means of a launcher installed on an Israeli military vehicle. The soldiers also fired a number of tear gas bombs at the journalists in the demonstration. Injuring at least nine journalists with severe suffocation, namely:

  1. Philip Lorient, the President of the International Federation of Journalists.
  2. Younis Mujahed, the Vice President of the International Federation of Journalists.
  3. Nasser Abu Baker, the Chairman of the Palestinian Syndicate of Journalists.
  4. Abdel Wahab Zghailat, the Head of the Freedoms Committee of the International Federation of Journalists.
  5. Adriana / member of the International Federation’s Executive Board as a representative of Colombia
  6. Manal Khamees/ a member in the General Secretariat of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate
  7. Mohammad Allaham/ Head of the Freedoms Committee of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate
  8. Omar Nazzal/ a member in the General Secretariat of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate
  9. The journalist, Ayed Owemer, Palestine TV.

"I had an interview with one of the Arab media agencies and we were at least 300 meters away from the checkpoint. The soldiers fired a barrage of tear gas bombs at us. We were in a peaceful march aimed at delivering a clear message, but there was a decision to suppress us. I was injured by a gas bomb in my right shoulder and I suffered suffocation” as stated by the Chairman of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate commenting on what happened and his injury. While Manal Khamees, the member of the General Secretariat of the Journalists Syndicate, stated that she has suffered severe suffocation, and could not move. She was transferred in a private vehicle to a nearby medical center where she underwent examinations and received the necessary treatment.

 

(18th Nov.) Al-Mazra’a Al-Gharbiya, located 10 kilometers away from Ramallah City, is subject to Israeli settlement procedures, since several months, aimed at connecting several settlements altogether and turn them into a single settlement bloc called “Talmonim”. According to the Commission against the Wall and Colonization, the Israeli settlers and authorities are working on establishing a settlement road to connect the settlements of Nahlael, Talmon, Erem Karem, with the settlement blocs, Modi'in Illit, Kiryat Sefer.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, one of the American journalists, Stephon Lamont, 45 years old, works for TeleSUR News Website, at around 1:00PM, on 18 Nov. 2018, has arrived with one of his friends, the activists of the International Solidarity Movement, called Baldwin Carnegie, to Na’lan Mountain hill (subject, along with the surrounding lands, to the settlers assaults), accompanied with a number of activists from Al-Mazra’a Al-Gharbiya, to film the attacks and assaults of the settlers, including damaging the water tanks, electricity wires, and the water network of the park located at the hill of Na’lan Mountain. When the journalist Stephon was filming, an Israeli settler riding a horse and putting a Kippah above his head, a small hat worn by religious Jews above their heads, arrived and began yelling at everyone there that this land was "the land of Israel" and asked them to leave the area at gunpoint. He was carrying a Colt 45 and deliberately fired at them willing to kill and wound them. He fired eight live bullets within 15 minutes. All of the persons in the area (including the journalist, Stephon) ran to find a shelter from the bullets behind a concrete wall. “However, the settler fired two gunshots directly at me, even though I did not pose any threat. I was carrying my camera in my hand, and the press card was hanged around my neck. After that, the Israeli settler retreated, and we quickly left the area” as stated the American journalist, Stephon. This would have ended in tragedy, if they had not rushed to take shelter behind a concrete wall as stated Wassim Ahmad Ladadwa, an employee at Al-Mazra'a Al-Gharbiya Municipality, who was with the American journalist. “What happened could have claimed the lives of a number of us, especially the journalist Stephon. The settler who did this is a well-known extremist settler who constantly threatens us and kicks us out from our land. He fired the gunshots at the journalist and we began to shout so that the journalist would quickly find a shelter. We were surrounded by a concrete wall, the bullets fragments were evident in the wall”.

 

(19th Nov.) On the afternoon of Monday, corresponding 19 Nov. 2018, hundreds of Palestinian citizens have gathered against Zikim Israeli Military Site, located on the coastal borders separating between Gaza Strip and Israel, to the west of Beit Lahia, Gaza Strip, concurrently with the Palestinian boats right across the mentioned gathering, in order to take part in a maritime march called for by the High Leadership Commission of the Return Marches and Breaking the Siege, as part of the peaceful demonstrations which erupted several months ago to break the siege imposed on Gaza.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the journalist, Talaat Osama Talaat Mushtaha, a single man, born on 28 August 1997, holding a personal identity card No. (403059504), lives in Ahmad Yasin St., Gaza Strip, (media student in Gaza Community College), works for Misk Press Network, has arrived, in the afternoon of Monday, corresponding 19 Nov. 2018, with his coworker, the journalist, Mohammad Al-Khaldi, to cover the events of the “16th day of the maritime march/ Al-Maseer Al-Bahri”, organized as part of the peaceful return marches, launched on the 30th of March 2018, in Gaza Strip. Like other journalists, Mushataha makes sure to always cover such events. At approximately 03:00PM, while he was about 50 meters away from the separating fence, on the other side of which the Israeli soldiers were deployed, and while he was filming this march with a "Canon" camera, behind the demonstrators, the occupation soldiers fired a barrage of tear gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at the demonstrators. He was injured by a rubber-coated metal bullet in his left leg (below the knee). Immediately, he fell to the ground, the paramedics who were there, rushed and carried him to the field medical point of the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, established to the south of the demonstration, where he received the first aid, and then he was taken to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia, where he arrived 20 minutes later. In the hospital, his leg was imaged, and the doctors found that his injured was moderate. He was discharged at around 08:00PM after he received the necessary treatment. At the same time, the journalist, Rashid Saed Khalil Rasheed, married, born on 27 Dec. 1970, holding I.D. Card No. (421448110), from Sheikh Ajleen Neighborhood, west of Gaza, a photographer of Associated Press Agency, was also injured by a gunshot in his left leg while he was 50 meters behind the demonstrators, away from the separating fence. Furthermore, the journalist, Ahmad Khamees Jassir Hasabbalh, a single man, born on 28 February 1994, holding I.D. Card No. (804566545), from Tal Al-Hawa, Gaza, a photographer of Images Like Agency, was injured by a rubber-coated metal bullet in his left arm, while he was 50 meters behind the demonstrators, away from the separating fence. Both photographers (Rashid and Ahmad) were taken to the Red Crescent Society medical point, where they received the first aid, and then they were taken to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia. Rashid’s wounds were described as serious. He underwent a surgery immediately, given the snapped tendons, slashed arteries, and fracture in the tibia as a result of his injury. A platinum plate was placed to his leg in the surgery. While the injury of the journalist, Hasabbalh was described as slight. On the morning of the following day (Tuesday, corresponding 20 Nov. 2018), Rashid was transferred to one of the hospitals in the occupied city of Jerusalem to complete the treatment there.

 

(21th Nov.) At 08:00 on the morning of Wednesday, a large force of the Israeli occupation army and police stormed the area of Ras Khamis neighborhood, adjacent to Shufat refugee camp, north of occupied Jerusalem. Israeli bulldozers started demolishing more than 16 shops there, under the pretext of building without a license. Hazem Emad Nasser, 28, a freelance photographer working with several satellite channels and media organizations, went to the scene to cover the event. During his filming, several soldiers approached him and drove him out of the place. He went through other roads between the buildings to approach the scene of the demolition. he walked about 3 kilometers to reach the site of the demolition were groups of youths where throwing stones at the soldiers. When he was seen by Israeli soldiers at the scene, he was attacked by a group of Israeli border guards who beat him on the head and chest, although he was wearing a hat and a jacket with a press badge. He fell to the ground during the attack and had bruises in his chest.

 

(22nd Nov.) Some of Hamas security officers in Gaza Strip have prevented Palestine TV staff from capturing shots of children who were selling at Al-Saraya conjunction to use such photos for a report on the suffering of children in Gaza Strip. The staff was taken to the investigation headquarters, the passports department in Gaza. They were detained and questioned. The camera memory was seized.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, some of Hamas security officers in Gaza Strip, at 03:00PM, on Thursday, corresponding 22 Nov. 2018, have prevented Palestine TV staff, including the Director of Reporters of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation “Palestine TV”, the journalist, Fuad Kamal Masoud Jarada (35 years old), the TV photographer, Mohammad Ziada Issa Nassar (42 years old), and the producer Yousef Ahmad Mohammad Abu Maghsib (38 years old) from capturing footage of children selling at Al-Saraya conjunction in Gaza. While the staff was inside the vehicle to capture the footage of the children selling in the streets to be used in a report on the suffering of children, two person arrived on a motorcycle, approached and introduced themselves as the Supply Investigation Department of Hamas Police. They asked the journalists to identify the agency they are working for and the reasons why they were there, and what are their justifications of the children’s photos. After showing the press cards and answering all of the questions, they were asked to hand over the camera memory, but the staff refused to do so. As a result, the staff were taken to the Investigation Department for investigation purposes. They were then taken to the office of the director, Manar Al-Haddad, who justified for the supply investigation officers that capturing such photos is inappropriate in Gaza. Once the camera memory was checked, their names were registered as well as their addresses, they were released but the camera memory was seized. The staff was informed that they can have the memory could be recovered on Sunday, from the Governmental Media Office. However, this did not actually happen, as the staff, on Monday, contacted the person in charge in the mentioned Office, Salama Marouf, who informed the staff that he has no idea about the memory and does not what has happened.

 

(25th Nov.) The Israeli occupation authorities have arrested An-Najah National University media student, Laith Yousef Jaarneh, on his way back from travelling, at Al-Karama bridge, after he participated in a media conference in the Republic of Turkey.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, Laith Basem Yousef Jaarneh (21 years old), a third-year media student at An-Najah National University, from Alar, north Tulkarem, holding I.D. Card No. (402399505), has travelled on Thursday, corresponding 15 Nov. 2018 from Tulkarem to the Republic of Turkey, and arrived the later on Friday, corresponding 16 Nov. 2018, to attend a media conference there. On his way back from Turkey to Jordan, on Friday, corresponding 22 Nov. 2018, he went to Irbid to visit some relatives. On Sunday, corresponding 25 Nov. 2018, Jaarneh left Jordan heading to Palestine. At around 10:30AM, he contacted his mother and informed that he was detained by the Israeli Intelligence at the border bridge between Jordan and Palestine (Al-Karama Bridge). His mother tried to contact him over and over again, but his phone was unreachable. At approximately 06:00PM, on the same day, Sunday, corresponding 25 Nov. 2018, she received a call from a person who identified himself as Adv. Naseem Abu Ghosh, from Israel, and informed her that her son Laith was detained by the Israeli occupation and was transferred to Petah Tikva interrogation center. On Tuesday, 27 Nov. 2018, the Jaarneh family was informed that their son was brought before a military court in Petah Tikva on the same day and that his detention was extended until Wednesday, corresponding 4 Dec. 2018. His mother, Amneh Najih Ahmed Jaarneh, stated that her son "suffers from back pain (spinal disc) and the Irritable bowel and that he needs medical follow-up." He was arrested last year for a month by the Israeli occupation and was arrested by the Palestinian Preventive Security for 23 days in Ramadan of 2018.

 

(23rd Nov.) At around 02:15PM, on Friday, corresponding 23 Nov. 2018, hundreds of citizens gathered in Al-Awda Camp, established by the High Leadership Commission of the Return Marches and Breaking the Siege in area (Abu safiya), northeast Jabalia, north Gaza Strip, as part of the peaceful return marches, launched on the 30th of March 2018 against the continuing siege on Gaza.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the journalist, Ismail Khalil Ismail Hamadeh, married, born on 1 June 1987, holds a personal ID Card No. (800771842), from Sheikh Radwan, Gaza City, a holder of diploma in journalism and media from the College of Palestine, a photographer and broadcast engineer of Media Group Agency, has went to cover this demonstration. At approximately 03:00PM, the Israeli occupation forces fired tear gas bombs and metal bullets at the demonstrators. He was about 300 meters away when he was directly injured by a tear gas bomb in the face (left cheek). The injury caused him bleeding inside the mouth, which resulted in a wound inside the mouth. He was taken to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society medical point, west of Al-Awda Camp, to receive the first aid. Then he was transferred to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia, where the doctors described his injury as moderate. He was discharged at around 06:00PM.

 

(25th Nov.) The Israeli occupation police has arrested the director of Wadi Hilwa Information Center, Jawad Siam, while he was covering a peaceful protest, at Salah Al-Deen St., Jerusalem, and decided to take him away from Salah Al-Deen and Al-Sultan Sulaiman streets in Jerusalem and prevent him from taking part or appearing in any event in “Israel” for 15 days.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the Director of Wadi Hilwa Information Center, Jawad Jamil Siam, born on 1st Oct. 1968, from Silwan, Jerusalem, at around 05:15PM, on Sunday, corresponding 25 Nov. 2018, was in Salah Al-Deen St., Jerusalem, where a peaceful protest was taking place against the arrest of Jerusalem Governor, Adnan Gaith, by the Israeli Occupation authorities. Less than five minutes after his arrival to the peaceful protest, his colleague from Wadi Hilwa Information Center asked him to carry her mobile phone while she was live shooting to the Center’s Facebook page. Meanwhile, Siam noticed that the Israeli police officers in the area began to point at him, knowing that he is not one of the demonstrators and has nothing to do with the protest. After two or three minutes, one of the officers, Captain Sloan, approached him and told him that he wanted to arrest and take him to the police headquarters in Salah Al-Deen Street. He seized his mobile phones and asked him to turn them on. But Siam refused this without a court order. On their part, the police officers refused that he contacts, especially that he lives alone with them at home. But he demanded that he contacts his children, as he was supposed to take them home with him in that evening. Siam was taken to the police center in Salah Al-Deen street, and after three hours, he was under investigation for the charge of incitement and calling for participation in illegal acts. He was also questioned about his Facebook account and his work as the Director of Wadi Hilwa Information Center, as well as about some of the demonstrations he has taken part in. The investigation and interrogation continued for about two hours and ended up with a decision to keep him away from Salah Al-Deen and Sultan Suleiman streets (two main streets in Jerusalem where most of the demonstrations take place) and to prevent him from appearing in any activity within the “State of Israel” for 15 days and to pay a personal bail of 3,000 NIS in addition to a third party bail of 3,000 NIS as well.

It is worth mentioning that the Director of Wadi Hilwa Information Center, Jawad Siam, has been liable to ongoing prosecutions and has been arrested about 42 times between 2007 and 2012, all under the pretext of "defaming" brokers who sell houses to the occupation and "endangering their lives" and "leaking" news to the Palestinian security services. This may range from actual imprisonment to house arrest until 11 Months. Since then, Siam has been arrested, detained, and house arrested and expelled from Al-Aqsa Mosque, the Old City and some places in Jerusalem from time to time.

 

(25th Nov.) At around 11:00AM, on Sunday, corresponding 25 Nov. 2018, the citizen, Tahreer Mohammad Abu Rajelah, received summons, at her house located in Khan Younes- Al-Bayuk, for her husband, Ihab Omar Yousef Fasfous, 46 years old, who works as a journalist, a father of five children, under which he must go to the Internal Security Headquarters, west of Khan Younes, on the following day, corresponding 26 Nov. 2018, at 09:00AM, in particular, the investigation department.

Fasfous works as a freelance journalist. He is a member in the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, and the Head of the Palestinian Human Rights Journalists Group, formed by him in collaboration with a number of his colleague journalists. It has a Facebook Page under the name of the Group, posting some materials on defending human rights and freedoms.

On Monday, corresponding 26 Nov. 2018, and on the specific scheduled date in the aforementioned summons, Fasfous arrived the Internal Security Headquarters, west of Khan Younes, and when he reached the external gate, he handed over his personal cards and pack of cigarettes. After that, he was taken by some of the security officers to a detention room, with an area of 10m*10m, with two beds inside it, a very small toilet. He remained inside the room for several hours without investigation, until one of the officers, at around 01:00PM, came and asked him to escort him to the investigation room where an officer in civilian clothing was waiting. The investigation lasted for fifteen minutes “without documentation”. The investigator, apparently displeased, asked him about a number of subjects, including the video posted on the Human Rights Journalists Group Page on the case of his nephew, Saif Amin Fasfous, 15 years old, who was beaten and detained earlier by the General Investigation Police of the Khan Younes, his political criticism of the State of Qatar and Hamas, and post on his Facebook account about the return marches where he wrote “Praise be to Allah that my blood is not traded in the return marches”. After the investigation was completed, he was taken back to the room where he was detained first. They gave him food but he did not eat and kept him in the room until late. At approximately 19:00PM, one of the security officers came and informed him that he was released. When he left the gate, they kept his identity card and press card and orally informed him that he must come the following day, Tuesday, corresponding 27 Nov. 2018, at 9:00AM without stating the reason for the summons. When he arrived home, Fasfous contacted the Journalists’ Syndicate and informed them about what had happened with him and the Syndicate contacted the concerned agencies and assured him that he would go the next day to receive his belongings only. At 9:00AM on Tuesday, 27 November, Fasfous arrived at the Internal Security headquarters in western Khan Younes for the second day in a row. At the outer gate he was accompanied by one of the officers who took him to a small office with a desk and chair where an officer in civilian clothes was sitting. The officer asked him to hand over his cell phone, but he did not have it with him, he left it home. He was then surprised to be taken to the same detention room where he spent 15 minutes the earlier day before being taken to investigation. Again, at around 09:20AM, he was investigated and questioned about his Facebook posts criticizing the political situations and return marches. The investigator had a file in front of him including some copies “screen shots” of Fasfous’s Facebook posts. He was also questioned about his political affiliation, and here Fasfous confirmed that he does not belong to any political faction. The interrogator then forced him to write down his personal email address, Facebook account and the passwords thereof, and after about half an hour, one of the officers entered and asked the interrogator to speak to someone outside the room. Five minutes later, he returned to tell him that he would be released today provided that next time he would not be treated the same way and neither the "human rights nor the syndicate" would assist him. He also told him "to speak of good or shut up" and then he placed before him a pledge form that he forcibly filled and signed. Then he was taken back to the detention room where he remained until 1:30PM, until he was released.

 

(26th Nov.) A female and male journalists were injured by the occupation soldiers’ bullets while covering the peaceful maritime march, northwest of Beit Lahia, as part of the return marches and protests in Gaza Strip.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the journalist, Safinaz Baker Mahmoud Allouh, born on 17 March 1989, married, holding I.D. Card No. (802249342), from Al-Sheikh Radwan, Gaza, works for AMAD Media Agency, has arrived, on the afternoon of Monday, corresponding 26 Nov. 2018, to the coastal border area between Gaza Strip and Israel, northwest of Beit Lahia, where the citizens gathered in parallel with some Palestinian boats in the sea, against the gathering, to cover the maritime march. At around 3:20PM, while she was doing her work (behind the demonstrators), at a distance of 200 meters away from the separating fence, on the other side of which the Israeli soldiers were deployed, and while she was filming the march with her camera, the occupation soldiers fired a barrage of tear gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets, at the demonstrators. She was injured by a rubber-coated metal bullet in the palm of her left hand. Immediately, the paramedics took her to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society medical point, established to the south of the demonstration, where she received the first aid, and then she was transferred to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia, where she arrived 37 minutes later. In the hospital, her hand was imaged, and the wound was stitched (3 stitches). The doctors described her injury as moderate, and she stayed in the hospital until 08:00PM. At the same time, the journalist, Mohammad Hazem Sami Al-Masri, single man, born on 17 August 1998, holding I.D. Card No.( 404129082), from Beit Lahia/Al-Manshia, north Gaza Strip, a photographer of Shihab News Agency, was injured by a gas bombs fired by one of the soldiers at his face (right cheek), while he was at a distance of 100 meters away from the separating fence (behind the demonstrators). He was transferred to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society medical point, where he received first aid, and then he was transferred to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia, where his injury was described as slight.

 

(26th Nov.) An occupation army force has arrested the journalist, Ahmad Al-Khateeb, after it has raided his house, located in Betunia, west of Ramallah, at dawn, on 26 Nov. 2018.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the journalist, Ahmad Fathi Al-Khateeb (33 years old), from Qaffin town, Tulkarem, lives in Betunia, Ramallah, married, has two children (Lial 8 years old, and Joury 4 years old), was surprised by a phone call from the Israeli occupation intelligence, at around 3:00AM, at dawn, on Tuesday, corresponding 26 Nov. 2018, asking him to immediately hand himself over. As his wife stated to MADA, the officer said to him “I will meet you downstairs, I do not want to raid the building, disturb your children, family and neighbors”. AL-Khateeb inquired whether they only want to meet him or arrest him, and the officer informed him that he will be arrested and the army is downstairs and he must come down. The journalist then hanged up the phone and looked out the window of the house. Indeed, he saw several Israeli army patrols under the building. He immediately left the house and went to the soldiers. When he arrived, they handcuffed him, and took him to Ofer Camp, not far from Beitunia, approximately two kilometers away from his house.

It is worth mentioning that the journalist Ahmad Al-Khateeb was arrested by the Israeli occupation in 2009 and the another time on 6 July 2014 while passing through the Za'tara checkpoint between Nablus and Ramallah, where he was then arrested for administrative detention until 17 July 2015.

 

(28th Nov.) The General Investigations in Gaza has summoned MAAN Agency reporter, the journalist Abdullah Issa Ibrahim Miqdad, and questioned him on the background of a case filed against him by the Governmental Media Office in Gaza, for the charge of “misusing the technology means”. He was asked to sign a pledge of “respecting public morals and not publishing false news or misusing the technology means”.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, MAAN Agency reporter in Gaza, the journalist Abdullah Issa Ibrahim Miqdad, 34 years old, holding I.D. card No. (800859621), at around 08:00AM, on Wednesday, corresponding 28 Nov. 2018, has received a phone call from a person who identified himself as an officer from the General Investigations. He asked the journalist Miqdad to urgently come to the Passports Headquarters/Technical Resources Department, in Gaza. The journalist Miqdad, went to the Passport Headquarters immediately, the moment he arrived, he was taken to a room in which an officer called “Abu Alnour” was waiting for him. The investigation was initiated with him, and he was asked about publishing the names of martyrs of children during the recent escalation in Gaza Strip on the website of MAAN Agency, the journalist Miqdad responded that he does not remember the incident. The officer then placed a judicial file against him, prepared by the Public Prosecution to the General Investigations to question him on the basis of a case filed against the MAAN Agency by the Government Media Office in Gaza. Abu Alnour gave Miqdad the choice either to cooperate or he will transfer the file to the Public Prosecution. Then he started asking him about the resources of news at MAAN Agency, and whether he had a work authorization? The investigation was completed by Miqdad signing a statement and a pledge to “respect public morals, and never publish false news or misuse the technology means”. After Miqdad’s signature, he was transferred to another room, where he was asked to hold a sign against his chest with his full name on it, his identity card number, and the charge of “misusing the technology”, a picture of him holding this sign was taken. While his picture was being taken, the photographer told Miqdad “move your face to the right, defendant, now to the left, defendant”. Then he was released, and he left the headquarters at around 09:30AM.

 

(30th Nov.) The freelance journalist, Mohammad Yousef Mohammad Mohawesh, was injured by gunshot fragments fired by the occupation soldiers while he was covering a demonstration taking place east of Bureij camp, Gaza Strip.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, the freelance journalist[1] Mohammad Mohawesh, (30 years old), at around 2:00PM, on Friday, corresponding 30 Nov. 2018, went to east Bureij Camp, in Gaza Strip, to cover the events of the weekly return march. A number of journalists were there as well, at around 2:30PM, the demonstrators began to increase, and the soldiers stationed on the other side of the separating fence began firing gunshots at the demonstrators. Mohawesh was at a distance of 200 meters away from the fence, on the other side of which the soldiers were deployed. He was wearing the Press helmet and vest, and carrying in his hand the camera and cell phone capturing photos of the events and live broadcasting the events through his cell phone. At around 3:30PM, while he was filming the events, he was injured in his right leg by gunshot fragments fired by the occupations soldiers near him. He could barely walk on his other leg with the assistance of a group of demonstrators until he reached the first ambulance. The paramedics found that there were fragments in his right leg which caused him wounds. He was transferred to Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital, where his leg was imaged and showed 3 large fragments as well as a number of small fragments but did not affect the bones. He was given a syringe and treatments to help remove the fragments. He was discharged provided he shall follow-up with the doctors to complete his treatment. Due to his injury, he had to stay home.

 

(30th Nov.) The journalist, Abdelraheem Abu Mahadi, single man, born on 28 February 1998, from Beit Lahia, north of Gaza Strip, a holder of Journalism and Media Diploma from Al-Aqsa College, a volunteer photographer of the Palestinian Ministry of Health, was injured by a gas bomb in high right arm (elbow) fired at him by the occupation soldiers while he was covering the events of the return march, on the afternoon of Friday, corresponding 30 Nov. 2018, even though he was 250 meters away from the separating fence. Immediately after his injury, he was taken to the field medical point of the Red Crescent Society, and then he was transferred to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia where he received the necessary treatment. He was discharged at around 06:00PM, and his injury was described as slight.

 

(30th Nov.) The American journalist, Stephon Lamon, was injured by a rubber bullet in his leg, and suffocation while he was covering a peaceful march against settlement in Al-Mughayyir, Ramallah.

According to the investigations of MADA field researcher, at around 11:00AM, on Friday, hundreds of citizens of Al-Mughayyir village, and some of the Popular Resistance activists, have taken part in a peaceful march towards the lands threatened with confiscation by the Israeli occupation authorities for military training. The demonstrators, upon completing Friday prayers, began marching towards “Elon” street connecting the town with the north of West Bank. An IDF force arrived and dispersed the demonstrators using gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets leading to the injury of the American journalist, Stephon Lamont, 45 years old, works for TeleSUR News Website, even though, between 1:200PM – 2:00PM, he was standing 200 meters away from the demonstrators, and he was near his colleagues the moment he was injured. A group of demonstrators (around 8) who were throwing stones at the soldiers were 20 meters away from them. The soldiers fired a barrage of gas bombs using a special launcher installed on a military vehicle firing more than 15 bombs at once. When Stephon saw this, he went to the other side of the street, and immediately was injured by a rubber bullet below his left knee. He began to shout with pain and two Red Crescent paramedics rushed to him, and provided him with first aid, put some cold bandages and drug on the injury and then he left Al-Mughayyir heading to Ramallah.

The journalist Stephon stated that he thinks the injury may not be deliberate. That is, the army did not target him directly, and that he might be injured by mistake while the soldiers were firing at the Palestinian demonstrators.

 

 

 

 

 


[1] Works for Al-Yaman Media Center