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Freedom of Movement for Palestinian Journalists

Freedom of Movement for Palestinian Journalists
  
  

 


Why this is important

Palestinian Journalists have launched a global petition as part of our campaign calling for an end to attacks against our community and violation of our freedom of movement, and in defense of our basic rights to move within our own land or to travel outside, a limitation that crushes our right to work and move freely and safely.

We urge you to help them by signing it.

Every day Israeli authorities restrict journalists’ movements between the Palestinian Occupied Territories and Israel, between the West Bank and East Jerusalem, between Israel and Gaza, and within the West Bank itself. According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Human Affairs, 542 obstacles (including 61 permanently staffed military checkpoints, 25 partial checkpoints and 436 unstaffed physical obstacles) constrain or forbid our movements. (OCHA, Special Focus, September 2012)

Despite long standing campaigning by journalists and civil rights organisations, Israeli authorities continue to reject identity cards, accreditations and press cards, including the International Press Card delivered by the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), when carried by Palestinian journalists while Israeli journalists enjoy freedom of movement in occupied Palestine, we are left waiting at the checkpoints.

Unions of journalists from all the over world which met at the IFJ World Congress in Dublin last June agreed to renew the campaign led by the IFJ in the last 15 years to convince the Israeli authorities to recognise its press cards in the occupied territories of Palestine, and deplored the continuous refusal by the Israeli Government Press office to recognise as bone fide journalists Palestinian news gatherers carrying the IFJ press cards who are denied access to areas where important news events take place and are not able to work in areas under Israeli jurisdiction.

Four hundred delegates representing 120 unions condemned unreservedly the continuous attacks by Israeli soldiers on Palestinian news gatherers, in particular photographers and camera crews, which, according to independent monitoring organisations, reached over 100 such attacks last year involving rubber coated steel bullets, tear gas and stun grenades, and reaffirmed that “freedom of movement is a central tenet of independent professional journalism and, in restricting such a right, Israeli authorities are in breach on international covenants and the right to report”.

We call on you to join our campaign which involves a wide coalition of civil society organisations and press freedom defenders in Palestine and abroad. We now seek larger support from citizens of the world, professional journalists, journalists’ unions, regional and international organisations, human rights and media organisations, and civil society and non-governmental organisations.

We are addressing this petition to the United Nations calling on nations to exert pressure on the Israeli government to stop its violations of International Law, including the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, defining in particular the right to freedom of movement and residence and the right to seek, receive and impart information as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

We aim to collect hundreds of thousands of signatures which we will deliver to the United Nations. Please add yours now! a quick and simple act of solidarity that will make a huge difference to Palestinian journalists

Posted July 16, 2013
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