RSF condemns Israeli attack on Lebanese TV crew

Reporters Without Borders has called on the Israeli authorities to
investigate the circumstances in which it says three journalists from
Lebanese television station, New TV, were injured.

RSF has said
that reporter Bassel Al-Aridi, cameraman Abd Khayyat and assistant
cameraman Ziad Sarwan were injured when their vehicle was hit by shots
fired from an Israeli helicopter on Wednesdasy, 12 July, as they
crossed a bridge in the south of the country.

They were injured
when they went to cover Israeli attacks on southern Lebanon which
followed the kidnap of two Israeli soliders by Lebanese Hezbollah
fighters.

"We are very alarmed by the sudden attack on the New TV
crew and we call on the authorities to protect journalists," Reporters
Without Borders said. "It is unacceptable that journalists should be
treated as combatants when they are covering clashes. We point out that
this would not be the first time the Israeli army has deliberately
targeted journalists."

New TV said: "The three journalists did
not hear the helicopter arrive and do not remember what happened after
the shots were fired, recovering consciousness in hospital. Their lives
are not in danger. They were taken to Natatiye hospital 70 km southeast
of Beirut." The station added that their vehicle was clearly marked
with the New TV logo.

One of the injured journalists said the
New TV vehicle sustained more damage than any other, "which suggests to
us that it was a targeted attack against our vehicle."

On
Thursday, three employees with Al-Manar, the TV station operated by the
Lebanese branch of Hezbollah, sustained minor injuries when its
premises in the Shiite suburb of Haret Hreik in south Beirut were
struck by a missile during an Israeli air raid. The station said its
antenna was not destroyed and broadcasting was not interrupted.

Picture: aftermath of attack on Beirut airport (Reuters).

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