A press organization alleged on Monday that the IDF and the defense establishment turned a blind eye to violence against foreign journalists by settlers and military personnel in the West Bank.
In a letter filed with the chief military prosecutor and the IDF General Command, the Foreign Press Association’s attorney cited harassment of reporters by Israeli security forces and inaction by the same in cases when Israeli civilians attacked foreign journalists.
The organization noted several recent incidents when journalists working for AFP, Reuters and AP were assaulted by members of the Israeli security establishment.
Earlier this month, a Palestinian photographer working for AFP said he was attacked by a mob of some 100 settlers near the West Bank settlement of Beit El. He said they threw stones at his car, cracking the windshield and lightly injuring him in the face and hands.
Despite lodging complaints with the IDF, the group said investigation of claims of violence against journalists have yielded no outcome.
According to the IDF, the military “recognizes the importance of journalistic activity and therefore the policy of Central Command is that the activity of journalists, which includes documentation and photography, is permitted in the entirety of the West Bank, so long as it doesn’t disturb the activity of the forces in the territory or it intends to expose classified information.”
The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said that the letter from the Foreign Press Association was received and that it would respond directly to the organization.