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UNESCO Calls For Better Protection Of Journalists

UNESCO calls for better protection of journalists after Gaza killing

21 April 2008 - The head of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has called for improved protection of journalists, after a Palestinian cameraman working for the Reuters news agency in Gaza was killed when a missile hit his vehicle.

"I condemn the killing of Palestinian journalist Fadel Shanaa," declared UNESCO Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura.

Mr. Shanaa, 25, died on 16 April after a missile hit the vehicle in which he and sound engineer Wafa Barbakh were travelling in while filming the actions of Israeli tanks near the Al-Barij refugee camp. Mr. Barbakh was injured in the incident.

The vehicle is reported to have been clearly marked with the word "Press" to indicate it was being used by journalists.

"I trust the Israeli authorities will spare no effort in investigating the circumstances surrounding the attack on Mr Shanaa's vehicle," said Mr. Matsuura. "It is important that due regard be paid to the safety of journalists, at all times and under all circumstances."


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