Al Jazeera News Channel’s journalist Givara Budeiri was arrested in a brutal manner by Israeli occupation forces while covering demonstrations in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah. Al Jazeera holds the Israeli government responsible for her welfare and demands her immediate release. Al Jazeera’s cameraman, Nabil Mazzawi, also had his camera destroyed by the Israeli authorities whilst reporting.
Commenting on the arrest, Dr. Mostefa Souag, Acting Director-General said, “We condemn the actions of the Israeli occupation forces in the strongest terms. The systematic targeting of our journalists is in total violation of all international conventions. Today’s violent actions by Israeli occupation forces against Givara Budeiri and Nabil Mazzawi are in total disregard for the fundamental human rights of journalists.”
He further stated, “The silencing of journalists by terrorising them has become a routine activity for the Israeli authorities as witnessed in recent weeks in Gaza and occupied Jerusalem. These actions cannot be viewed in isolation. Today's arrests come just two weeks after the bombing and destruction of the Al Jalaa building, which housed Al Jazeera and other media organisations offices in Gaza. Such attempts to prevent journalists from carrying out their professional duty to inform the world and report events on the ground is a crime against the journalistic profession.”
Al Jazeera calls on the international community of journalistic organisations and human rights bodies to join hands in condemning the actions of the Israeli government and to call for the immediate release of Givara Budeiri, and all other detained journalists, to allow them to practice their profession without fear or intimidation.
Journalism is not a crime.