After a militant triggered a violent clash with Palestinian security forces, dozens of Palestinian journalists gathered outside the United Nations building in Ramallah on Monday to demand freedom of the press. Died while in custody.
The family of 43-year-old Nizar Banat from Hebron said his family said he died shortly after security forces stormed his home and arrested him violently last week. Known for media videos, he condemned corruption within the Palestinian Authority (PA).
Day of conflict The clashes between the protesters and the police injured several journalists.
Reporters Without Borders said on Monday that 12 Palestinian journalists, including 5 women, were attacked by Palestinian police during weekend riots in the occupied West Bank.
Naila Khalil, a reporter for the New Arab Media, said that Palestinian journalists have sent a letter to the United Nations, urging the United Nations to “immediately take necessary measures” to protect media freedom.
Mohammed Gharafi of the ultra-Palestinian news website said he was harassed by Palestinian security forces, who threatened to confiscate his mobile phone if he did not stop filming the protests.
In addition, the human rights organization in Ramallah announced on Monday the establishment of a legal team to follow up on the attack on journalists.
At a press conference, Amar Dewick, director-general of the Independent Commission for Human Rights, said that in the past few days, when reporting on demonstrations in Ramallah, several human rights organizations have accepted testimonies from male and female journalists who were attacked.
Al-Dwaik said: “Reporters were deliberately targeted, especially female reporters at the scene, by attacking, hijacking cameras or stealing communication equipment.”
He described these incidents as “very worrying” and prevented reporters from performing their duties.
On Sunday, some reporters cut off their press cards to protest the group’s silence on attacks against them.
No need for God…
A syndicate that does not protect Palestinian journalists cannot continue. pic.twitter.com/aoUudw4143
-Muath Hamed (@MuathHamed) June 27, 2021
Translation: No reason. It is useless to continue to be part of the syndicate that does not protect its journalists.
On Monday, the general intelligence service of the Palestinian Authority subpoenaed a journalist, Fayhaa Khanfar, for interrogation.
Khanfar, one of the female journalists who was violently attacked during the Ramallah protests, told the local media that in addition to robbing or damaging their cameras and mobile phones, plainclothes security forces also threw stones and empty bottles at reporters.
“When I was standing on a side street, a plainclothes soldier attacked me,” she said.
“While he yelled at me, he tried to forcibly take my phone, drag me onto the street, and threw me to the ground.”
Investigation into the death of Barnet
According to the official WAFA news agency, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said on Monday that those responsible for Banat’s death “will be held accountable”.
According to an autopsy, Banat was beaten on the head, chest, neck, legs and hands, and it took less than an hour from arrest to death.
Banat was registered as a candidate in the Palestinian parliamentary election, which was originally scheduled to be held in May until Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Postpone them indefinitely.
At a press conference on Monday, Banat’s family announced their rejection of the investigation committee established by the Palestinian Authority.
Barnat’s father, Khalil, said: “The investigation committee established by the government is not recognized. What is based on deception is incorrect.”
“Nizal was dragged from the bed and then killed. All forces who arrested and murdered him under the cover of darkness should be tried in public.”