Scene of a shooting attack (illustrative)
Scene of a shooting attack (illustrative)Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Two masked assailants on Wednesday night fired dozens of rounds of bullets at the Tayibe home and vehicle of Ynet's Arab affairs correspondent Hassan Shaalan, the site reported.

Three of the bullets hit near the bed of Shaalan's four-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter, who were in their room at the time. They were not injured, but there was damage to property.

One of the bullets hit just 10 centimetres (3.9") from the girl's head. The shooters were outside the home for approximately one hour prior to the attack, and asked the neighbors where Shaalan's home is. After they fired the bursts of bullets at approximately 1:50a.m., one of them used Hassan's name, letting out a curse in Arabic.

Shaalan had no enemies, Ynet News noted, emphasizing that he has likely been targeted due to his work as a journalist covering the wave of crime in Arab towns, as well as recent rioting in mixed Jewish-Arab towns.

At the time of the attack, Shaalan was working on his next report. He told Ynet that although he initially assumed the bullet was a stray from a nearby shooting, he soon realized he had been targeted, due to the attackers' use of his name. He also said that he has received threats to his life in the past, but they have never materliazed.

"There are people who threaten me, and I know them but ultimately, I always manage to deescalate the situation," Shaalan told Ynet. "This time, I wasn't warned that someone wanted to hurt me. I don't know who shot me and what for. I didn't cause harm to anyone, I'm not at odds with anyone. I'm not a criminal and I've got no ties to any criminal organization or money laundering. I'm an honest man. I'm always on the ground everywhere. They could have killed me while driving and not just at home."

He believes that "these criminals wanted to send a message — you better keep your mouth shut. They don't want us to report on what's going on in Arab society. I'm not afraid of anyone. I keep working as usual. I know I always work honestly and present things properly in a professional manner."

"This is the first time someone has shot up my house, and it's a very bad feeling because I did not hurt anybody. My children almost got murdered and I do not know what they will do to me now if I go out on the road.

"In Arab society, there is violence and murders all the time, and there is no solution to this phenomenon. I always say — 'Yesterday someone was murdered, tomorrow they will kill me, my wife, my son and my daughter'. The criminals roam free and there is no one to take care of them."

He emphasized to Ynet: "I did not expect to get to this point. I want to take care of my family now. My wife is crying, and I need to calm my children down and go somewhere else. We will not stay home today."