Jakarta, June 2010 – The Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) Indonesia joined The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) statement today called upon the Israeli authorities to release without delay all journalists and media staff who were detained on board the Gaza bound aid convoy on Monday morning. Up to a hundred journalists are believed to be among the passengers currently being held by the Israeli Defence Forces following the attack of Israel troop to the flotilla carrying humanitarian aids for the people in Gaza.
“The attack against media workers as well as humanitarian workers is unacceptable in a democratic State and this is not kind of a friendly attitude at all,” said Nezar Patria, the Chairman of AJI.
The International Press Institute reported that two journalists from Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald -reporter Paul McGeough and photographer Kate Geraghty– were detained after being “transported” to the Israeli port of Ashdod. Two Bulgarian journalists working for the BTV television station -reporter Svetoslav Ivanov and cameraman Valentin Vassilev- were also arrested during the assault.
Reports said that up to ten people were killed and many more injured during clashes between the military and passengers when the flotilla was boarded by the Israeli Defence Forces in the early hours of Monday morning.
“We condemn the attack, at the same time we feel grateful for the fantastic efforts made by the National Federation of Israeli Journalists (NFIJ) to defend the rights of working professionals who have been caught up by Israeli troops,” added Nezar Patria.
AJI Indonesia demands for an independent investigation into the raid, accountability for those responsible, and an immediate end to the blockade in Gaza as well as to allow international media to cover the Gaza area freely.
For further information please contact :
Nezar Patria, The Chairman of AJI, Mobile +62811829135
Margiyono, The Head of Advocacy, Mobile +628161370180