International press freedom organisation Reporters Without Borders (RWB) on Tuesday strongly condemned Israeli attacks against Palestinian media in Gaza and recalled its earlier view about Israeli war crimes and Geneva Convention violations because of attacks on civilians.
RWB said in a statement that the Israeli army bombed Hamas TV channel "Al-Aqsa TV" today and also shortly afterwards attacked the "Al-Aqsa Radio" building, which was subsequently knocked off the air. Many other media bureaus were damaged in the second attack.
"Reporters Without Borders strongly condemns direct fire on the Hamas broadcast stations. The fact that media serve as propaganda organs does not justify making them a military target," RWB said in a statement here.
The press organisation recalled that in earlier conflicts, an expert committee from the International Criminal Court (ICC) "specified that a journalist or media organization is not a legitimate target merely because it broadcasts or disseminates propaganda." RWB also reiterated standing positions on war crimes that it holds since the last Israeli invasion of Gaza two years ago.
"Attacks against civilian targets constitute war crimes and serious violations of the Geneva Conventions," RWB said at that time. "Those responsible must be identified." Around 1,200 Palestinians, most of them civilians and 25 percent of them children, have been killed in just over three weeks of Israeli air, sea and land attacks. Fewer than 50 Israelis have died, all but three of them army soldiers. One journalist has died and several have been wounded in the Israeli attacks.