Journalists should be allowed in and out of Gaza: RSF

Friday, Dec 08, 2023

PARIS: Media rights group Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged Israeli and Egyptian authorities on Thursday to allow journalists to move freely across the Gaza Strip´s southern border crossing into Egypt.

The Rafah crossing was shut after Israel declared war on Hamas militants in Gaza following the deadliest attack in its history on October 7. While it has intermittently opened in recent weeks, only people whose names were on approved lists have been allowed out.

In a statement, RSF called for the Rafah crossing to be opened “so that journalists can finally come and go on both sides of the border”. Palestinian journalists who, like other civilians in Gaza, have had to flee their homes in the north of the Gaza Strip “are now being told by Israel to assemble at the border with Egypt, with no possibility of crossing”, RSF said.

“Conversely, international reporters are prevented from entering.” The Rafah crossing is controlled by Hamas and Egypt, though RSF says Israel monitors all activities at the southern border.

Gaza´s only other official border crossing, which links the besieged territory to Israel, has also been shut. \“In two months of war, not a single reporter has been authorised to enter the Gaza Strip via Rafah, which clearly undermines the media´s ability to cover the conflict,” RSF said.