Deadliest conflict in decades: Journalists' peril in the Israeli-Gaza war

Deadliest conflict in decades: Journalists' peril in the Israeli-Gaza war

Shafaq News / The Committee to Protect Journalists described the ongoing war led by the Israeli army in the Gaza Strip on Friday as the deadliest for journalists in Israel in 30 years.

In a statement reported by the French site "Mont Carlo", the committee stated that it is investigating all reports regarding the killing, injury, or disappearance of journalists and media workers during the war, which marks the deadliest period for journalists since the Committee to Protect Journalists began collecting data in 1992.

According to the committee, as of December 21st, 2023, preliminary investigations revealed that at least 68 journalists and media workers were among more than 20,000 fatalities since the war began on October 7th, with over 19,000 Palestinians killed in Gaza and the West Bank, and 1,200 fatalities in Israel.

Earlier, the Israeli army informed AFP and Reuters that it could not guarantee the safety of their journalists working in Gaza after seeking assurances that their journalists would not be targeted in Israeli strikes, as reported by Reuters on October 27th.

Journalists in Gaza face significant risks, especially while covering the ongoing conflict, including destructive Israeli airstrikes, communication disruptions, shortages of supplies, and widespread power outages.

According to the committee, as of December 21st, 68 journalists and media workers were confirmed killed, including 61 Palestinians, four Israelis, and three Lebanese journalists. Additionally, 15 journalists were reported injured, three were declared missing, and 20 were detained.

The Committee to Protect Journalists is also investigating numerous unconfirmed reports about other journalists' deaths, disappearances, arrests, injuries, or threats, as well as damages to media offices and journalists' residences.

In this context, Sherif Mansour, Middle East and North Africa Program Coordinator at the Committee to Protect Journalists, emphasized, "CPJ strongly insists that journalists are civilians performing critical work during crises and should not be targeted by warring parties."

He added, "Journalists across the region make immense sacrifices to cover this tragic conflict. Gazans, in particular, have suffered unprecedented losses and face immense threats. Many have lost colleagues, families, and their journalistic facilities, seeking safety when there is no shelter or safe passage."

Israel claims that at least 1,200 were killed in Israel, and 240 were held hostage on October 7th after the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) launched a surprise attack.

Health officials in Gaza state that nearly 20,000 Palestinians have been confirmed dead since then due to Israeli attacks, with thousands believed to be buried under the rubble.

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