Photo: AFP
Assisting the injured on Gaza beach (Archive photo)
Photo: AFP
Photo: AP
Man rushes injured girl to hospital (Archive photo)
Photo: AP

German paper doubts Gaza beach reports

German newspaper casts doubt on Palestinian claims that IDF shell killed seven family members on Gaza beach. How come Hadil Ghalia was seen wearing dry clothes after the Gaza beach attack when she was reported to have been swimming?

While three major British newspapers published reports contradicting Israel's claims that its military was not responsible for the murder of seven members of the Ghalia family on a Gaza beach over a week ago, a German newspaper casts doubt on the authenticity of pictures taken soon after the bloody incident.


German daily Sued Deutsche, said pictures taken by Zakaria Abu Irbad, 36, a cameramen with the Palestinian independent news agency Ramattan, contradict Palestinian claims that an IDF shell killed the Ghalia family and point to the possibility that the event was staged to hold Israel responsible.


Irbad was the first journalist to arrive at the scene after the attack and Ramattan sold footage of Hadil weeping on the beach by her dead father to all major news broadcasters.


The newspaper said in footage of the beach taken by an IDF drone at the time of the attack, five craters left by IDF artillery shells could be seen, but that 250 meters away people could also be seen.


The paper said it is strange that although shells exploded 250 meters away from a beach site where Palestinian families congregated, no one was seen running away or panicking.


Irbad told the newspaper he was told of the attack by paramedics who guided him to the scene.


But no paramedics are seen until later in the footage, raising suspicions that he was first to reach the scene.


Moreover, if Irbad was the first to get to the scene, why were most bodies covered by sheets? Who was there first to cover the bodies? The newspaper asked.


'Did girl give instructions to cameraman?'


The newspaper also doubts Irbad's claim that Hadil was not injured because she was in the water when the shell exploded. His footage show her dry and fully clothed.


Another question raised by the newspaper is a shot of a man carrying a rifle next to the dead body of Hadil's father. The newspaper said in earlier footage, the same man was seen lying on the beach among the injured.


The footage also shows paramedics in green clothes and a dozen of bearded men looking for evidence. The newspaper asks whether the men are Hamas affiliates and wonders why they were preoccupied with collecting evidence rather than helping the injured.


Did Hamas men hide evidence from the scene, as claimed by eyewitnesses interviewed by Israeli broadcasters?


The newspaper said Irbad evaded most of the questions addressed to him.


Asked why he didn't try to calm Hadil instead of filming her he said: "She asked me to film her. She wanted to be seen next to her father to show the world the crimes that Israel is committing."


The newspaper finally asks: "Did the shocked 10-year-old girl, who had lost her father minutes earlier, give the cameraman direction instructions?"


פרסום ראשון: 06.18.06, 10:56
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