PARIS (Reuters) – Journalist Issam Abdallah was killed on October 13 in southern Lebanon in a strike “directed” from the direction of the Israeli border, according to preliminary findings, Reporters Without Borders said on Sunday. Investigate it.
Reporters Without Borders said: “According to the ballistic analysis conducted by Reporters Without Borders, the shots came from the east of the place where the journalists were standing, from the direction of the Israeli border.”
“Two strikes in the same place in such a short period of time (just over 30 seconds), from the same direction, clearly indicate precise targeting.”
The Reporters Without Borders report did not find out who launched the strike against journalists or provide its basic analysis.
The Israeli army did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the findings of the Rapid Support Forces. It said it was not deliberately targeting journalists and that it was investigating the October 13 incident.
Reuters said in a statement: “We are reviewing the initial conclusion reached by Reporters Without Borders, which concluded that Issam Abdullah and two other journalists in Alma al-Shaab appear to have been deliberately fired upon from the direction of Israel on October 13.” October.
“We reiterate our call on the Israeli authorities to conduct a prompt, comprehensive and transparent investigation into what happened. We call on all other authorities with information about the incident to come forward. We will continue to fight for the rights of all journalists to freedom of expression.” To convey news in the public interest without harassment or harm wherever they are.”
Abdullah was killed on October 13 while working with six other journalists near the village of Alma al-Shaab, close to the Israeli border, where the Israeli army and the Lebanese Hezbollah militia were exchanging fire.
Reporters Without Borders said its preliminary findings were based on what it described as “a comprehensive analysis of eyewitness accounts, video footage and ballistics expertise.” The report added that its investigations are continuing.
“It is unlikely that the journalists were combatants, especially since they were not hidden: in order to have a clear field of view, they were out in the open for more than an hour, on the top of the hill.” The report said. “They were wearing press-branded helmets and flak jackets.”
In response to a question about why it published the preliminary findings and a six-minute video instead of waiting until the investigation was completed, Jonathan Dagher, head of its Middle East office, said: “We are certain of our findings at this stage and we want the public to know them.” Know about them.
“There are other elements that we have not been able to confirm yet,” he added. He did not go into further details.
The Lebanese army and government held Israel responsible for Abdullah’s killing. A Lebanese military source told Reuters that this claim is supported by a technical assessment on the ground that was conducted after the attack.
Abdullah was with two other Reuters journalists, Maher Nazih and Thaer Al-Sudani, as well as journalists from Al Jazeera and Agence France-Presse, when he was killed.
Reported by Tassilo Hamel. Edited by David Clarke, Mark Bendich, and Lisa Shoemaker
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