On June 30, Israeli forces invaded the Aida-area In the middle of the night. Soldiers broke into the home of Palestinian photographer Mohamed Al-Azza, assaulted him and his family and detained him. Freed on July 11 on paying a bail of 1,500 shekels, he is scheduled to appear on July 25 before an Israeli military court, which will rule on his case. Al-Azza sustained severe injuries during his arrest on June 30 and was transferred to a hospital where he remained for three days before being sent back to prison. An Israeli military court heard charges by the Israeli security forces accusing Al-Azza as having participated in âviolent and illegalâ activities.
Reporters Without Borders reported that, âas a journalist, [Al-Azza] has covered demonstrations in support of detainees on hunger strikes and protests against the November 2012 offensive in Gaza.â
On April 8, in the Aida refugee camp near Bethlehem, an Israeli soldier shot Al-Azza in the right cheekbone with a rubber-coated steel bullet. Al-Azza, who was working for Palestine News Network (PNN), sustained a broken right cheekbone, and underwent two surgeries to remove the bullet. Reporters Without Borders has urged the Israeli security forces to investigate this deliberate shooting of a journalist, to punish the soldier responsible, and to end âthe complete impunity enjoyed by IDF soldiers responsible for violence against journalists.â