Israeli strike on Lebanon kills two journalists, civilian

Israeli strike on Lebanon kills two journalists, civilian
2 min read
21 November, 2023
An Israeli airstrike killed two journalists while they were reporting about 3 kilometres from the border on Tuesday.
Tuesday's attack was the third time that Israel targeted journalists in Lebanon since 8 October.

Two journalists and a civilian were killed in an Israeli strike in southwestern Lebanon on Tuesday morning, bringing the total number of civilians killed by Israel to 14, including three journalists.

The two journalists, Farah Omar and Rabih al-Maamari from the Al-Mayadeen network, were killed while reporting on the outskirts of the town of Tayr Harfa – about 3.5 kilometres from the Lebanese-Israeli border. The identity of the civilian killed was still unknown by the time of publishing.

Israel and Hezbollah and its allied Palestinian groups have been engaging in tit-for-tat rocket exchanges along the border since 8 October. Although initially limited in scale, daily strikes have grown in intensity and have reached as far as 40 kilometres from the border in Israel.

A video of the site where they were struck shows three bodies strewn in an open field, a camera mounted on a tripod that has been set ablaze and press vests scattered around the impact crater.

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Israel had previously struck a gathering of journalists on 13 October, killing Essam Abdullah of Reuters and seriously wounding three other journalists from Agency France Press and Al Jazeera. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) concluded that the journalists were clearly identifiable as press, and that the missiles that struck them came from Israel.

The Israeli Envoy to the UN said that Israel "would never want to hit or kill or shoot any journalist … but we're in a state of war, things might happen," and promised the country would investigate.

A month later on 13 November, an Israeli drone struck metres away from a gathering of journalists in the town of Yaroun, resulting in light injuries.

A total of 43 journalists have been killed in Lebanon and Gaza since the beginning of Israel-Gaza war on 7 October, according to RSF.

RSF has urged Israeli authorities to protect journalists, particularly in the Gaza strip, saying Israel has "not hidden its lack of interest in protecting [journalists]."

The intentional targeting of journalists is a war crime.