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Israel Continues to Block International Journalists From Covering Gaza War

Misbar's Editorial Team Misbar's Editorial Team
12th April 2024
Israel Continues to Block International Journalists From Covering Gaza War
Israel blocks international journalists from entering Gaza (Getty)

The Foreign Press Association (FPA) criticized Israel for blocking international journalists' access to the Gaza Strip, noting that Tel Aviv aims to prevent the rest of the world from seeing the extent of the destruction caused by the occupying army.

The Israeli Ban Restricts the World’s Ability To See the Truth in Gaza

The statement from the Association called on Israeli authorities to grant "extended and unrestricted" access to Gaza for international media, after a six-month period during which international correspondents were barred.

The Association expressed its concern that, six months into the conflict between Israel and Hamas, Israel continues to prevent international correspondents from independently entering any part of the Gaza Strip. It described this prolonged denial of access to independent journalists in the war zone as "unprecedented."

The statement also raised questions about what Israel does not want international journalists to see.

It highlighted that the Israeli authorities have consistently rejected international journalists' appeals for access, both in private meetings and in rulings by the Supreme Court, citing various security and logistical reasons. It was noted that the occupying army allowed only a few media outlets limited entry into Gaza under military escort.

The Association pointed out that the comprehensive ban has restricted the world's ability to understand the true cost of the war on all involved parties.

Israel Blocks International Journalists To Promote Its Misleading Narrative

Since the outbreak of the war in the Gaza Strip on October 7, 2023, Israel has been preventing international journalists from entering Gaza. The world has seen harrowing reports from Palestinian journalists in Gaza, who must balance their own safety and that of their families with their duty to document attacks, atrocities, and daily life as the war continues. They face the same challenges and difficulties as the residents of the Gaza Strip.

Israel Blocks International Journalists To Promote Its Misleading Narrative

Israel exploits the absence of international journalists in Gaza to promote its misleading narratives, which obscure the violations and massacres it commits against Palestinians. On one hand, it casts doubt on the Palestinian narrative of events, and on the other, it presents its own accounts as the truth, despite them being proven false on several occasions.

Journalistic reports have stated that granting independent journalists free access to report from the ground is essential for ensuring objective media coverage, informing the world about ongoing hostilities, documenting human rights and humanitarian law violations, and protecting civilians.

The reports confirm that the ongoing Israeli ban on the entry of international journalists into Gaza conceals from the world the reality of what is happening.

Documenting Under Military Guard

Israel permitted a few media outlets to enter Gaza under military escort during tours and incursions by the occupying forces within the Gaza Strip. They presented several biased and misleading narratives, such as the Israeli army's raid on the Al-Shifa Medical Complex in central Gaza City on November 15. A team from the American network Fox News accompanied them to document the operation.

At that time, Misbar highlighted discrepancies and manipulations between the scenes displayed by the Israeli army and those documented by Fox News.

How Did the Israeli Army Manipulate the Placement of Weapons Inside Al-Shifa Hospital?

An Israeli Court Rejects a Request for International Journalists To Enter Gaza

In January, the Israeli Supreme Court rejected a request by the Foreign Press Association in Jerusalem to allow journalists and media workers independent access to Gaza, citing "security concerns."

The International Federation of Journalists condemned the decision and reiterated its call for the court and the Israeli government to allow foreign media entry into Gaza to ensure independent coverage and to stop violating press freedom.

The Federation expressed concern that prolonging the ban contributes to the Israeli military's control over international media coverage of the war in Gaza.

An Israeli Court Rejects a Request for International Journalists To Enter Gaza

Guterres Calls for International Journalists To Be Allowed Into Gaza

Following the Foreign Press Association's statement, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also demanded on Monday, April 8, that Israel allow international journalists to enter the Gaza Strip.

In a tweet on his X account, Guterres stated, "An information war has added to the trauma of the war in Gaza - obscuring facts and shifting blame." He added that "Denying international journalists entry into Gaza is allowing disinformation and false narratives to flourish."

Israel Targets Journalists During the Gaza War

Israel has killed dozens of Palestinian journalists in Gaza, targeting their families and homes with missiles during the ongoing war on the Gaza Strip. Additionally, many journalists have been injured, preventing them from carrying out their duties on the ground and necessitating the evacuation of some from Gaza for medical treatment.

U.N. experts and international organizations have condemned the killing, attacking, and arresting of Palestinian journalists in the occupied Palestinian territories, especially in Gaza, in recent months.

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