DCMF officials visit Gaza in show of solidarity with Palestinian journalists

DCMF officials visit Gaza in show of solidarity with Palestinian journalists

DCMF director, Jan Keulen and programmes manager, Ayman Bardawil visited Gaza to witness the impact of Israeli attacks on media personnel



A delegation of officials from Doha Centre for Media Freedom recently conducted a visit to Gaza to witness the damage caused to journalists and media institutions which were hit during the recent Israeli offensive, and to reiterate its commitment to support press freedom there.

The delegation expressed solidarity with Palestinian journalists and media outlets, underlining its unshakable and continued support for media in Gaza.

The delegation featured DCMF director, Jan Keulen, programmes director Ayman Bardawil and DCMF bureau chief in Gaza Adel Zaanoun, as well as the head of programmes at DCMF’s Gaza bureau, Ali Abu Afash and chair of the violations monitoring unit, Haneen Othman.

The delegation visited the houses of two journalists who lost their lives in the recent attacks, Mohamed Kumi and Husam Salama, who worked as photographers at Al Aqsa satellite channel, and the Shawa and Hasri tower which hosts several media offices.

The director of Al Aqsa channel in Gaza Imad Ifranji explained to the delegation how the channel was targeted by a rocket attack, injuring seven journalists including Khadar Zahar who had to have his leg amputated as a result of his injuries.

Bardawil requested Zahar's medical report in order to offer medical assistance and provide the support he needs.

Ifranji thanked DCMF for the "great work" it is doing in favour of media during Israel's offensive on the Gaza Strip.

Jan Keulen extended his condolences to the families of the journalists affected by the Israeli attacks. He condemned the targeting of journalists, calling for an end to impunity and highlighting the need to hold those responsible for killing journalists legally accountable around the world.

The delegation also visited Al Quds photographer, Mohamed Al-Akhrass, who was injured when the channel's offices were hit by four rockets.

The delegation visited the offices of a press school in downtown Gaza, which was hit by an Israeli airstrike, as well as the AFP offices, which are located in the same building and suffered damage in the attack.

"DCMF is providing safety equipment for journalists during war time,” Keulen explained.

He also lauded the work done by DCMF’s bureau in Gaza which stood by foreign and local journalists during the war, helping them in any way possible.

Keulen explained that throughout 2012, DCMF has provided legal and logistical assistance to victims of media violations worldwide, including Palestinian journalists.

The DCMF delegation's visit is an act of solidarity with journalists in Gaza after the war and aims to reinforce cooperation in ways that serve Palestinian journalists, explained Keulen.

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