A statistical report issued today, 4 February, by the Government Information Office entitled "the state of media freedom in the Palestinian territories last January", indicates that forces of the Israeli occupation assaulted journalists and media personnel in the Palestinian territories 17 times over the last month. Assaults included beatings, arrests and shootings.
In its monthly report, the Office pointed out that the occupation has stepped up its aggression against Palestinian journalists and reporters working in the Palestinian territories, especially in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem.
Moreover, it indicated that the most prominent attacks were carried against journalists covering events of the Israeli raid on the village of "Bab Al-Shams" east of Jerusalem. Bab Al-Shams was established by Palestinian and international activists on land that is threatened with seizure in order to build one of the largest Israeli settlement projects.
It also pointed out that the occupation arrested the journalist Anan Samir Ajjawi, 28, from the town of Ajjah, south of Jenin, as he returned from Egypt through the Karama Crossing. They also arrested journalist and researcher at the Wadi Hilweh Information Center, Mahmoud Qarain, during his coverage of the demolition of homes and the bulldozing of land in the town of Silwan in Jerusalem.
Furthermore, the report mentioned that the occupation forces are currently detaining 5 journalists: Eyad Al-Rifai from 'Anata, in the suburbs of Jerusalem; Amer Abdulhaleem Abu-Arfah, a correspondent of the Shehab Agency in the West Bank who is from Hebron; Yasin Mohammad Yasin Abu-Khdair, who is a journalists for Al-Quds, Al-Talai and Al-Nahar newspapers in Jerusalem; Murad Mohammad Abu Al-Baha'a, a journalists in the office of Legislative Council from Ramallah; Mahmoud Moussa Essa, a journalist and Editor in Chief for Sawt Alhaq Newspaper from 'Anata; and Shareef Al-Rujoob, a radio host on Sawt Al-Aqsa Radio in Hebron, who is from the town of Dawra in Hebron.