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Illustration Photo: Elad Gershgorn
Illustration Photo: Elad Gershgorn
 
 

Palestinian journalists balk at strip search

Al Quds newspaper reporters trying to cover Clinton news conference say Israeli, foreign journalists not asked to drop pants

Elior Levy, AP
Published: 07.17.12, 00:03 / Israel News

A Palestinian journalist said he and three colleagues trying to cover US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's meeting in Jerusalem with Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad walked away after being asked to drop their pants in an Israeli security check.

 

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The Palestinian journalists were invited to Monday's event by the US consulate, which sent a staffer to guide them through security. Mohammed Abu Khdeir of the Al Quds newspaper, which is published in east Jerusalem, said Israeli and foreign journalists were not asked to strip.

 


במקום סיקור הפגישה - הפגנה מול הקונסוליה ברמאללה. פגישת קלינטון-פיאד (צילום: מתי שטרן)

Fayyad and Clinton

 

Foreign journalists have complained in the past about being strip-searched at events with top Israeli politicians though the practice appears to have eased.

 

An Israeli government official said Israel is trying to provide the best possible security for Clinton and that similar procedures are used at Western airports and in secure facilities in Western capitals.

 

The head of the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate (PJS), Abdel Nasser Najjar, lauded the reporters for refusing to strip and backed their decision to boycott the event.

 

In light of the incident, the PJS has decided to hold a demonstration on Tuesday outside the American consulate's offices in Ramallah.

 

Last year an Al-Jazeera cameraman was ordered to drop his pants during a security check before an event in which President Shimon Peres participated.

 

In another incident last year, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's guards ordered a pregnant Arab newswoman to remove her bra and told other reporters to strip to their underwear.

  

 

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