Israeli forces have assaulted two cameramen working for Reuters news agency in the occupied West bank, forcing them to strip on the street.
Yousri Al Jamal and Ma’amoun Wazwaz said on Thursday that an Israeli military patrol stopped them as they were on their way to a checkpoint in the West Bank city of al-Khalil, where a Palestinian youth had been earlier killed by Israeli forces.
The cameramen added that the Israeli troops punched and hit them with the butts of their guns after they made the cameramen get off their vehicle, which was marked as belonging to “TV.”
The two were also wearing blue flak jackets with the word “Press” printed on them.
The soldiers who attacked the Reuters employees accused them of working for B’Tselem, an Israeli human rights organization which documents human rights violations in the occupied West Bank.
However, the cameramen said the forces did not give them the chance to show their identification cards and made them strip and kneel down on the road.
Wazwaz was overcome by the fumes and taken to a hospital after the Israeli forces dropped a tear gas canister and ran away from the scene.
According to the cameramen, two other Palestinian journalists working for local news agencies were also arrested by Israeli soldiers at the same location.
Stephen J. Adler, chief editor of Reuters News said, “We deplore the mistreatment of our journalists and have registered our extreme dismay with the Israeli military authorities.”
The Israeli military has offered no explanation for the attack on the journalists and says it will investigate the issue.
On Thursday, Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian teenager on his birthday after he allegedly threatened them with a toy gun in the occupied West Bank.
Reuters has failed to provide its viewers with a solid explanation on the publication of a manipulated report by the London-based news agency on female Iranian ninjas.
On February 18, Reuters showed a number of Iranian girls practicing martial arts in a city near Tehran, claiming Iran was training more than 3,000 female ninjas to kill any possible foreign invaders.
The report claimed that the athletes are undercover assassins in the service of the Islamic Republic.
Following Press TV’s contact with the Tehran office of the British news agency, Reuters posted an advisory with some corrections on February 26 but refused to apologize for slander.
Editor-in-chief Stephen J. Adler said that the error “was promptly corrected the same day it came to our attention,” but failed to mention the eight-day interval between the first publication of the story and the posting of the advisory with minor corrections.
During the eight-day interval, the distorted Reuters report was picked up by other British media outlets, thus adding to the damage already caused by the misleading report.
The advisory was posted in Reuters Video Point, which is an accompanying website for Reuters broadcast video service.
The athletes have condemned the report, saying the misleading report can definitely be a problem to their professional sport career.
“It can harm our chances to travel to other countries to take part in global tournaments and international championships because Reuters is considered by many to be a reliable source,” Raheleh Davoudzadeh said.
Akbar Faraji, who established Ninjutsu in Iran over 22 years ago, condemned the British media accusations, saying his students will pursue their legal action against Reuters to the end.
“We have filed a defamation lawsuit against Reuters and we intend to pursue it as far as necessary because it is a matter of reputation,” he said.