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2014 'bloodiest' year for media in Palestinian territories: report

GHAZA CITY: Last year was the deadliest ever for journalists working in the Palestinian territories, a Gaza-based watchdog said Thursday, months after a bloody war in the besieged enclave.

“2014 was a black year for freedom of the press in Palestine… and it was the worst and bloodiest,” the Gaza Centre for Press Freedom said in its annual report.

The report accused Israel of committing 295 separate “violations of press freedom” across the occupied Palestinian territories.

These resulted in the deaths of 17 journalists during the 50-day Gaza war in July-August, including that of an Italian photographer working for Associated Press.

Israel also arrested or detained an unspecified number of journalists, denied freedom of movement to local media workers wanting to leave the blockaded Gaza Strip, and partially or completely destroyed 19 buildings housing editorial operations during its bombardment of the territory during the conflict.

The Palestinian authorities also committed 82 violations of press freedom, including arresting or summoning 28 journalists, and injuring or assaulting 26 more.

The conflict between Israel and Hamas militants in densely-populated Gaza, home to 1.8 million people, killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians, mostly civilians, and 73 on the Israeli side, mostly soldiers. -AFP

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