The USG Open Source Center translates articles from the Arabic on the Israeli attack on newspapers and journalists in the Gaza Strip.
Palestinians Say Israel Trying To Silence Media Following Attack on Journalists
West Bank and Gaza Strip — OSC Summary
Sunday, November 18, 2012 …
Document Type: OSC Summary…
The Bethlehem-based independent Ma’an News Agency in Arabic reports at 0031 GMT on 18 November that “in the early hours of the morning, Israeli war planes shelled the Al-Shawwa and Al-Husari Tower in Gaza City. The tower, which accommodates several media offices, including the Ma’an office, was shelled with four rockets. The attack targeted the eleventh storey belonging to the Al-Quds satellite channel. Three journalists from the satellite channel sustained what was described as moderate wounds.
The tower accommodates satellite channels and local and foreign media outlets, including Ma’an. The Israeli war planes continued their intensive and violent attacks on the Gaza Strip during the night and the early morning.”
At 2359 GMT on 17 November, the HAMAS-run Beirut-based Al-Quds TV carries the following “urgent” screen caption: “Al-Quds correspondent: Media teams in the Al-Husari building call ambulances to evacuate wounded people after an Israeli attack on the building.”
At 0013 GMT on 18 November, Al-Quds TV carries the following “urgent” screen caption: “Our correspondent says that three employees from Al-Quds TV were wounded in the Israeli shelling of the Al-Quds TV offices in Al-Shawwa and Al-Husari Tower in central Gaza.” At 0031 GMT the station reports that the number of wounded people in the station has risen to four.
At 0045 GMT, the station identifies the four wounded media staff as Darwish Bulbul, Ibrahim Labad, Muhammad al-Akhras, and Hazim al-Da’ur.
At 0101 GMT, a correspondent reports that the number of casualties has risen to six and a screen caption says that journalists Khadr al-Zahhar sustained severe wounds.
At 0109 GMT, Al-Quds TV carries the following “urgent” screen caption: “Al-Quds TV views this attack as an ugly crime and a blatant violation of media freedom.”
At 0110 GMT, a correspondent standing outside a Hospital interviews one of the wounded correspondents, Hazim al-Da’ur, together with Imad al-Afranji, head of the Gaza office of Al-Quds TV. Al-Da’ur provides an account of the attack while being propped up by two people holding him.
At 0111 GMT, Al-Quds TV reports in a screen caption that “our colleague Khadr al-Zahhar had his leg amputated after the occupation crime in which the bureau was bombed. Another was wounded by shrapnel all over his entire body and he is in severe condition.”
Al-Afranji is then interviewed and says that “the occupation wants to show the world that it is the victim and that the Palestinian people are the ones who dispersed the Jews, but the opposite is true. They are the ones who came to Palestine and forced us out of our homes. The Palestinian people are a victim and we will convey this picture to the world through our profession. We will show the truth of what is happening on the ground, without exaggerating or using any media fabrications.”
He says that the image of “steadfast” Palestinians “angered” Israel. Afranji further notes that “this was a deliberate targeting of journalists and media staff. Last time they demolished the offices of the Al-Aqsa satellite station, attacked the offices of the Abu-Dhabi channel, and killed around seven journalists.” He adds that Al-Quds TV lost two of its journalists in the 2008-2009 military operation, adding that “now, they want to repeat this.” He says that “They will not succeed in silencing the media.”