“Journalists [in Israel] are subjected to ‘military censorship,’ orders banning coverage of certain subjects, private-sector lawsuits designed to gag them and open hostility from members of the government,” Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has said.
According to RSF, Israeli ranked 88 in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index, noting that the Israeli parliament has begun considering proposed amendments that would make recording or disseminating certain photos and videos would be punishable by five to ten years in prison.
“Because of self-censorship, there is little or no coverage of the reality of life in the Palestinian territories,” RSF said, pointing out that “foreign freelancers often have difficulties in obtaining or renewing accreditation.”
RSF also said that the Israeli occupation forces “often violate the rights of Palestinian journalists, especially when they are covering demonstrations in the West Bank or Gaza Strip.”
It stated that the Israeli occupation snipers had killed and wounded journalists in Gaza during the coverage of the ongoing peaceful Great Return March.
“Two Palestinian journalists were killed by IDF snipers and dozens were wounded while covering the ‘March of Return’ protests in the Gaza Strip in 2018,” RSF said.
About the arbitrary Israeli detention of Palestinians, the RSF said: “Under Israel’s system of administrative detention, Palestinian journalists can be held indefinitely without formal charge and without notification of a lawyer, on the grounds that they are inciting violence or cooperating with terrorist organisations.”
It concluded: “The IDF have harassed or closed many Palestinian media outlets in recent years for allegedly inciting violence.”