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Palestinian media group issues petition protesting Israeli media's lack of coverage of the Prawer Plan

Bedouins hold signs as they take part in a protest against the Prawer Plan in the Negev desert
Bedouins hold signs as they take part in a protest against the Prawer Plan in the Negev desert

REUTERS/Ammar Awad

In response to the Israeli media's lack of coverage and dearth of analysis regarding the Palestinian public's protests to the Prawer Plan we put out a petition that, to date, has received over 100 signatories, among them journalists, writers, activists, academics, and public figures.

The Prawer Plan seeks to displace up to 70,000 Palestinians from the Naqab (Negev), cut off the community's ties to their historical lands and force them into towns specially designated for them.

Below is a protest petition hosted on the I'lam Media Centre for Arab Palestinians in Israel website.

Protest Petition

We, the undersigned journalists, writers, activists, academics, and public figures, denounce the Israeli media's coverage and treatment of the protests by Palestinian citizens against the implementation of the Prawer Plan which will confiscate 800,000 dunams of land and expel tens of thousands of Naqab (Negev) Palestinians from their homes.

Most Israeli media preferred to ignore the event, and did not cover it at all. This violated the Israeli media's ethical and professional commitment to the public's right to know.

The media coverage was minimal – as hundreds protested and a general strike was held. The Israeli media focused instead on what it called “riots”, reporting the story of Israeli officials and police officers.

Israeli media did not make an effort to present the necessary facts of the Prawer plan and population projections of the Naqab. Rather, they used loaded language and accepted Israeli institutional propaganda fully, as if the “organized settlement of the Negev” wasn't accompanied by an intentional disregard for the human and social costs of the plan, nor did they offer any alternative views on the plan.

Based on the above, we demand that the Israeli media commit itself to its ethical and professional duty and reflect reality by giving space to a wide range of voices on the Israeli street, including an immediate halt to blindly adopting the official narrative of the Israeli establishment.

We believe that the true test of the media's claim to professional and ethical credibility is its strength in defending human rights and universal values. Therefore, Israeli media remains indebted to the Palestinian community, and they have to pay this debt if they wish to save face, as professional and legitimate media organizations.

For the list of signatories (in Arabic), click here.

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