PA condemns Israel
for "collective punishment,"
but issues no condemnation
of murder of Israeli teens
Official PA news agency
only mentions murdered teens
in English version of news report,
but leaves out murders in Arabic report
by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
Today, the official PA news agency WAFA reported two official PA statements, which included condemnations of Israel's "collective punishment" against Palestinians. They made no reference to the three Israeli teens who were murdered by Palestinian terrorists and whose bodies were found yesterday, but merely referred to "the disappearance of the three settlers" as the reason for Israel's "attack against defenseless Palestinian civilians":
"In its 5th meeting, the government condemned the Israeli military attacks on the Gaza Strip and the broad and ongoing Israeli military attack against defenseless Palestinian civilians in the West Bank since the disappearance of the three settlers."
[WAFA, the official PA news agency, Arabic website, July 1, 2014]
Earlier in the day, WAFA published parts of a letter sent today by the Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to three UN officials, also condemning Israel's "collective punishment" of Palestinians.
WAFA's Arabic version of the report on the letter made no mention of the three Israeli youths who were kidnapped and murdered.
However, in the official PA news agency's very similar English language report on the letter, the murdered Israeli youths were mentioned, albeit as "three allegedly abducted settlers." The report did not mention that the teens' murdered bodies had already been found.
In the English report, the letter sent by the PA's UN representative Riyad Mansour to the UN leaders reportedly said that Israel's actions constituted "collective punishment since the beginning of the Israeli military aggression in search of three allegedly abducted settlers." However, WAFA did not include any mention of the kidnapped and murdered teens in its report to Arabic readers.
On June 12, 2014, three Israeli teens, Eyal Yifrach, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Frenkel, 16, were kidnapped while hitchhiking in the West Bank. Israel responded to the kidnapping by conducting house-to-house searches in Hebron and arresting hundreds of Hamas members. The boys' bodies were found by Israeli security forces near Hebron on June 30, 2014. They appeared to have been shot to death soon after the abduction.
The following is the English language version of the official PA news agency WAFA's report. The Arabic paragraph that left out the mention of the murdered Israelis is inserted for comparison after its English equivalent, in italics and in brackets:
NEW YORK, July 1, 2014 (WAFA) -
"Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, Ambassador Riyad Mansour, sent Tuesday identical letters to the UN Secretary-General, President of the UN Security Council (Russian Federation) and President of the General Assembly on the ongoing escalated Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people in West Bank and Gaza.
Mansour underscored that many Palestinians were either killed or injured during the Israeli bombardment of Gaza in the past two weeks, stressing that the escalation of Israeli aggression threatens to further destabilize the already fragile situation on the ground, pulling the region into more violence, which, he said, requires the attention of the international community, particularly the UN security council's attention, whose mission is to preserve international peace and security.
He said [that] as part of a collective punishment since the beginning of the Israeli military aggression in search of three allegedly abducted settlers, more than 575 Palestinians were arrested across the West Bank, while others were killed with Israeli live fire. (emphasis added by Palestinian Media Watch)
The following is the English translation of the above paragraph as WAFA reported it in Arabic. It does not mention the murdered Israeli teens at all:
["In addition, Ambassador Mansour wrote in his letter that Israel is escalating its military operations throughout the West Bank, in a deliberate attempt to stoke the tensions and conflicts on all fronts, which has led to the arrest of more than 575 residents and the deaths of several residents as Martyrs, as part of a policy of collective punishment."]
Meanwhile, Mansour expressed strong condemnation, on behalf of the Palestinian leadership, over Israel's military aggression and its collective punishment against the Palestinians, calling upon the international community and the UN Secretary Council to put an end to Israel's crimes and to hold it accountable.
He reiterated the urgency to promptly and completely lift the inhumane, illegal and immoral Israeli siege imposed on the Gaza Strip, stressing the need to ensure the protection of the Palestinian people who are under occupation, as well as to ensure respect for the law, including the fourth Geneva conventions."
[WAFA, the official PA news agency, English website, July 1, 2014]