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Palestinians tell UN probe that Israel waging a wide-scale war against press

UN commissioners Chris Sidoti, left, Navi Pillay, center, and Miloon Kothari, right, discuss their probe into Israel and the Palestinians at the United Nations in New York, October 27, 2022. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)
UN commissioners Chris Sidoti, left, Navi Pillay, center, and Miloon Kothari, right, discuss their probe into Israel and the Palestinians at the United Nations in New York, October 27, 2022. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)

Israel is waging a “wide-scale war” on Palestinian media workers, Palestinian journalism representatives tell UN investigators.

“Israel is targeting Palestinian journalists as part of a systemic policy to stifle the Palestinian voices and to silence us,” says Naser Abubaker, president of the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate.

“We as Palestinian journalists are subjected to not just abuse and violations, but a wide-scale war by the occupying state.”

Speaking to a high-level team of UN investigators, he says nearly 50 Palestinian journalists have been killed doing their work since 2000 and “no one was held accountable.”

The first series of hearings, which are being live-streamed, kicked off Monday focusing on Israel’s designation last year of seven Palestinian civil society groups as “terrorist” bodies.

Lead investigator Navi Pillay tells the assembly that the aim of the hearings was “to allow victims and survivors on all sides to speak for themselves.”

Critics say both Pillay and the inquest are biased against Israel.

Israel has previously said it will not cooperate with the commission, saying its members “have repeatedly taken public and hostile positions against Israel on the very subject matter that they are called upon to ‘independently and impartially’ investigate.”

TOI Staff contributed to this report.

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