Daily Israel Report

Media Barred From Expulsion Victims? Homes

The government has reneged on its promises that "everyone will be able to watch the expulsion from his home" and has barred the media from entering homes while police are expelling residents.

By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 8/13/2005, 10:30 PM / Last Update: 8/12/2005, 1:59 PM

The IDF also ruled it will require reporters and photographers to leave an area if officials decree there is a "reasonable fear of danger to human life." Security personnel will use "reasonable force" against journalists who do not cooperate, according to the IDF spokesmen.

Government officials promised as recently as last month that the media would be free to cover the expulsion, scheduled to begin next Wednesday, and that everyone "will be able to view it from his home." Last week, officials began to announce restrictions on the freedom of journalists to travel and ruled they will be "embedded" with security personnel.

Two buses will take journalists every morning to two different Jewish communities due to be dismantled. Mobile broadcasting units from foreign media will accompany each bus. About two-thirds of the media on the buses will be from outside the country, part of more than 2,000 foreign journalists expected to cover the operation.

IDF spokesmen said journalists will not be restricted from moving within a community, but will not be allowed to travel to another community.

They also are prohibited from identifying the community before they arrive and are restricted from reporting in a way that might "inflame passions or escalate the situation."