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Palestinian ministry condemns Israel’s targeting of journalists in Jenin

A journalist's camera damaged by Israeli bullets in Jenin is seen in this photo taken on July 3, 2023. (By Palestinian media)

The Palestinian Information Ministry says Israel’s targeting of journalists in its recent deadly bombardment of the Jenin refugee camp is a desperate attempt to hide the truth about its crimes across the occupied territories.

In a statement issued on Monday, the ministry said besieging media crews for more than two hours inside a house in the camp, shooting at journalists, and the seizure and disposing of a camera and a transmitter were part of Israel’s policy of concealing its crimes.

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) recently called on Israel to end “systematic” attacks on Palestinian journalists.

There has been evidence that almost a dozen reporters have been attacked or targeted by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank over the past few months.

Attacks on at least 11 journalists since al-Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by an Israeli sniper on May 11, 2022, have been recorded by the cameras or microphones of those targeted or by their colleagues while they were covering protests or military operations in the occupied West Bank.

No proceedings have been initiated against any of those responsible for these acts of aggression.

On Monday, Israel attacked Jenin in airstrikes and ground raids. At least ten Palestinians, including three minors, have been killed, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

Media reports say ambulances cannot get to the wounded as fierce gun fights continue between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian resistance fighters.

Jenin’s deputy governor Kamal Abu al-Rub said the Israeli military “was not only targeting people, but the infrastructure of the camp as well.”

“They (Israeli forces) have cut off all electricity, telecommunications and water.”

Abu al-Rub said this is “collective punishment” for all residents of Jenin and particularly the refugee camp, describing Israel’s actions inside the camp as “terrorism.”

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority has labeled the recent Israeli operation “a war crime.”

And, the Palestinian ambassador to the Arab League has called for an urgent meeting on Tuesday. The meeting, requested by the Palestinian Authority, will “discuss ways of effective action at the Arab and international levels to stop this Israeli aggression, hold its perpetrators accountable, and request protection.”

On June 19, Israeli soldiers stormed Jenin and fired live ammunition, stun grenades, and toxic gas. At least seven Palestinians, including one minor, were killed and more than 90 suffered injuries. 

Combat helicopters were used for the first time in decades after the ensuing hours-long exchange of gunfire between Palestinian resistance fighters and Israeli soldiers.

Since the start of 2023, Israeli forces have killed more than 190 Palestinians, including 26 children, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. The death toll includes 36 Palestinians who lost their lives during a four-day Israeli onslaught on the besieged Gaza Strip between May 9 and 13.

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