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Journalists targeted by Israeli soldiers in separate incidents

(MADA/IFEX) - 16 May 2010 - The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) strongly condemns the Israeli occupation forces' attack on "Al-ayyam" newspaper editor Ahmad Farraj, on 15 May 2010. The incident occurred at the Hizma checkpoint while the editor was headed to Ramallah city. MADA also condemns the arrest of Alsharqiya cameraman Ala' Abu Alsu'od, and the difficulties suffered by Palestine TV correspondent Haroon Amayreh as a result of gas inhalation. They were both covering the Bili'n weekly march near Ramallah on 14 May.

Farraj said that he was heading to Ramallah by taxi at about 12:00 PM on 15 May. When the taxi reached the Hizma checkpoint, a group of soldiers asked the passengers to hand over their identity cards. They then ordered Farraj to get out of the taxi. When he showed them his press card they beat him brutally with their fists and rifle butts. "I had bruises all over my body, especially on my hands and legs," Farraj said.

Abu Alsu'od said that he went to cover the Bili'n weekly march, and while he was filming, Israeli soldiers arrested him and transferred him to the Ofer investigation center. He was detained there from 12:30 PM until 9:00 PM.

According to Amayreh, he was interviewing General Major Sultan Abu Al'nen in Bili'n when the Israeli occupation forces fired tear gas canisters. Amayreh experienced severe difficulty breathing as a result of inhaling the gas. He lost consciousness for a short period and medical relief volunteers who were in the area provided him with the necessary treatment.

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