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MADA reports 117 Israeli violations of Palestinian media freedoms since December

Feb. 10, 2018 5:04 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 14, 2018 4:43 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) released a report on Saturday saying that between December 2017 and the end of January 2018, the group recorded 117 violations against Palestinian media freedoms at the hands of Israeli forces.

MADA reported that there was a decrease in violations against media freedoms was recorded in January compared to December 2017, during which 89 violations by Israeli forces were reported against journalists (84 of which were assaults) during their coverage of protests against US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

In January, MADA recorded a total of 31 violations against media freedoms in Palestine, mostly by Israel, as 28 violations were committed by Israeli forces while three violations were committed by Palestinian forces.

Despite recording a decrease between December 2017 and January 2018, MADA said that violations for January were high compared to January 2017.

In January 2018, out of the 28 violations committed by Israeli forces, “one of the main violations reported was assaulting Reuters’ photojournalist in Jerusalem with a baton on the head causing a huge wound and a concussion,” MADA said.

“Israeli forces also continued their policy of preventing coverage of incidents by holding journalists and assaulting them,” the group added.

Meanwhile, three violations were committed by Palestinian officials against journalists -- one in the occupied West Bank and two in the Gaza Strip.

Palestinian journalists often describe their work as a form of “resistance,” as they believe their stories show the world the devastating effects of Israel’s policies on Palestinians and provide Palestinians an outlet for their voices in a media climate that is often overshadowed by pro-Israeli narratives.

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