Foreign press group condemns stabbing attack by Palestinian posing as reporter

The stabbing incident occurred at Zayit Junction, in the Kiryat Arba area. The terrorist was shot dead at the scene, while the soldier was moderately wounded.

October 16, 2015 16:52
2 minute read.

Hamas-run TV footage of attack

Hamas-run TV footage of attack

An organization representing foreign journalists in Israel and the Palestinian territories on Friday condemned the attack by a Palestinian assailant who stabbed an IDF soldier in Hebron while posing as a reporter.

The stabbing incident occurred at Zayit Junction, in the Kiryat Arba area. The terrorist was shot dead at the scene, while the soldier was moderately wounded.

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During the incident, the terrorist approached the soldier wearing a "press" flak jacket and carrying a camera.

Magen David Adom paramedics said they evacuated a 20-year-old Israeli in moderate condition with a stab wound to his upper body. The soldier has been taken to the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem.

The attack came as Hamas called for a "day of rage" against Israel as two weeks of violence continued.

"The Foreign Press Association understands a Palestinian posing as a local news photographer and wearing a t-shirt marked PRESS stabbed an Israeli soldier in Hebron today," the group said in a statement.

"We utterly deplore this violation of press privilege and call on local Palestinian media organizations to immediately verify all media credentials to ensure there are no violations," the FPA said. "The FPA represents the foreign media working in Israel and the Palestinian territories and tightly restricts the issuance of FPA credentials."

"This attack was carried out by someone posing as a local Palestinian journalist. All the same, it marks a worrying development that demands that all media operate with heightened caution in the West Bank and east Jerusalem."

Last month, the IDF removed an officer from his position after investigations found that he had acted wrongly when a force under his commander broke the cameras of foreign journalists in the West Bank.

On September 25, Givati Brigade soldiers at Bet Furik smashed the cameras of two Agence France-Presse reporters who had arrived to film a Palestinian demonstration.

In a story it wrote about the incident, AFP said the IDF threw Italian video journalist Andrea Bernardi to the ground, jabbed him with a weapon and held him down until he produced a press card and that soldiers took away the camera of Palestinian photographer Abbas Momani.

Following that incident “in which a force commander behaved in a manner that is incompatible with expectations of an IDF commander, an operational investigation was launched by the head of the sector, and an additional investigation was launched by the commander of the Givati Brigade, Col. Yaron Finkelman,” the IDF said.

On Thursday, the Southern Command Headquarters chief, Brig.-Gen. Udi Ben Mohad, accepted Finkelman’s position that the officer had failed in his duties, and should be ejected from his position.

“We will examine the continuation of the officer’s service,” the military source added.

Last week, MK Nachman Shai wrote a letter to Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon demanding that he instruct the IDF to investigate the incident and make it clear that such behavior must change.

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