Layal Najib

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By Joel Simon

As Venezuelan elections approached in November, President Hugo Chávez accused news broadcasters of engaging in a "psychological war to divide, weaken, and destroy the nation." Their broadcast licenses, he said, could be pulled--no idle threat in a country where a vague 2004 media law allows the government to shut down stations for work deemed "contrary to the security of the nation."

Israel's summer offensive in Lebanon was filled with danger for hundreds of journalists who braved bombs and bullets to cover fighting between Israeli forces and Hezbollah guerrillas. The offensive began after guerrillas abducted two Israeli soldiers and killed eight near the Lebanese-Israeli border. During the 34-day conflict, one journalist and a media worker were killed, media facilities were bombed, and several reporters suffered injuries from Israel Defense Forces' (IDF) fire.
Majority are murdered; worldwide death toll rises
CPJ Update
Committee to Protect Journalists
August 16, 2006


CPJ Calls for Release of Kidnapped Fox News Journalists

After gunmen ambushed a Fox News Channel crew in the center of Gaza City on August 14, and abducted correspondent Steve Centanni, a U.S. citizen, and freelance cameraman Olaf Wiig of New Zealand, CPJ called for their immediate and unconditional release in a statement carried widely in domestic and international media. Fox News reports today that negotiations for the safe release of the two journalists are underway and CPJ continues to monitor developments closely. Seven other journalists have been kidnapped in Gaza over the last year. All were released unharmed.
August 9, 2006

His Excellency Ehud Olmert
Prime Minister
State of Israel
Jerusalem, Israel

Via Facsimile: +972-2-5669245

Your Excellency:

The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by Israeli military actions that sharply restrict the ability of the press to cover the current conflict in Lebanon and that endanger the lives of civilians, including members of the press. We are particularly concerned about the safety of an estimated 250 journalists in Tyre, who are hunkered down in hotels and unable to move because of Israel's threats to target all vehicles on the roads.
New York, July 27, 2006—The Committee to Protect Journalists expressed concern today over allegations by several television crews that Israeli warplanes had attacked them, effectively shutting down live television coverage from southeast Lebanon.

Crews from four Arab television stations told CPJ that Israeli aircraft fired missiles within 80 yards (75 meters) of them on July 22 to prevent them from covering the effects of Israel’s bombardment of the area around the town of Khiam, in the eastern sector of the Israel-Lebanon border
New York, July 24, 2006—The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by the killing of a freelance photographer and a media technician during separate Israeli missile attacks in Lebanon.

Layal Najib, 23, a freelance photographer for the Lebanese magazine Al-Jaras and Agence France-Presse, became the first journalist to be killed since Israel began attacks on Lebanon in response to a cross-border raid by the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah. Najib was in a taxi yesterday trying to meet up with a convoy of villagers fleeing the Israeli bombardment of south Lebanon when she was hit by shrapnel from a missile on the road between the villages of Sadiqeen and Qana, local media reported. She died at the scene.

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