Safety of journalists in Gaza and Israel

Update 10 November: We join those at the United Nations, in civil society and around the world who are calling for a humanitarian ceasefire - for the sake of journalists as well as other civilians. This week there are further warnings about the dire humanitarian situation. We also want to express our deep gratitude and admiration for the journalists who have continued to show us all the reality of what is happening, despite their personal risks. The value of their work is essential, and their safety should be protected as with all civilians.

Our first responsibility is to speak up for the photojournalists and others documenting the reality on the ground in Gaza and Israel. Journalists should be respected for the risks they face, and must not be targeted. There are former World Press Photo Contest winners living and working in both Israel and Gaza. We are thinking about their safety and the safety of all civilians.

Journalists in Gaza are at especially high risk now as they cover Israel’s ground assault and relentless airstrikes in an increasingly dire situation with disrupted communications, extensive power outages, and shortages of food, water and other essentials.

The Committee to Protect Journalists is documenting the killing of journalists and the number is shockingly high. From 7 October through 30 October:

  • 31 journalists were confirmed dead: 26 Palestinian, 4 Israeli, and 1 Lebanese.
  • 8 journalists were reported injured.
  • 9 journalists were reported missing or detained.
The journalists confirmed dead to date are:
Nazmi Al-Nadim, Yasser Abu Namous, Duaa Sharaf, Saed Al-Halabim, Ahmed Abu Mhadim, Salma Mkhaimer, Mohammed Imad Labad, Roshdi Sarraj, Roee Idan, Mohammed Ali, Khalil Abu Aathra, Sameeh Al-Nady, Mohammad Balousha, Issam Bhar, Abdulhadi Habib, Yousef Maher Dawas, Salam Mema, Husam Mubarak, Issam Abdallah, Ahmed Shehab, Mohamed Fayez Abu Matarm, Saeed al-Taweel, Mohammed Sobh, Hisham Alnwajha, Assaad Shamlakh, Shai Regev, Ayelet Arnin, Yaniv Zohar, Mohammad Al-Salhi, Mohammad Jarghoun, Ibrahim Mohammad Lafi.

Please see the Committee to Protect Journalists website for a regularly updated account.

This is in the context of thousands of civilian deaths. We were horrified seeing the photographs documenting the killing of civilians, including many children, by Hamas and their allies. We continue to watch the rapidly mounting death toll in horror, as thousands more children are killed by Israel in Gaza.

We support statements by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights warning of the increasingly dire humanitarian situation in Gaza due to Israel attacks and siege, while also calling for the release of all hostages held by Hamas and an end to continuing rocket attacks.

In a context of rampant disinformation, it’s vital that journalists have access and are able to safely do their work. In the midst of this war, visual journalists are capturing the images which help us all understand the brutal reality on the ground. We continue to believe that this increased understanding is a crucial part of finding a way forward.