- The Washington Times - Saturday, April 19, 2003

GAZA, April 19 (UPI) — Israeli troops Saturday shot dead a Palestinian cameraman who worked for Palestinian Satellite Television Channel and also the Associated Press Television Network TV during clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinians in the West Bank city of Nablus, Palestinian witnesses and medical sources said.

The sources said that clashes erupted between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers in the town during which Nazeeh Darooza, the 40-year-old cameraman, was killed while he was working. Eighteen Palestinians were injured.

Palestinian witnesses said that dozens of Israeli soldiers raided the section known as Casbah and were confronted by dozens of Palestinian youths who began throwing stones.

Palestinian Radio, quoting Israeli army officials, said that the soldiers recognized Palestinian gunmen and opened fire, adding that a fierce gunbattle with the soldiers took place in the area.

The Palestinian witnesses denied that there were any gunmen in the area, adding that the Israeli soldiers opened fire at the people without distinction, killing the cameraman and wounding the 18 residents.

Palestinian journalists who were in the area said that they were trying to videotape the clash on the outskirts of the Casbah when soldiers opened fire on them.

A Palestinian photographer who was in the area said that the group of Palestinian journalists, most of whom work for international news organizations, wore jackets clearly emblazoned with "Press."

He said that the group of journalists was seen by the soldiers in the area but that it appeared they directly targeted them.

Tawfeek Abu Khousa, deputy chairman of Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, said that the organization of Palestinian journalists is strongly condemning the killing of Darooza, saying that, "It is an awful crime."

He revealed that Darooza is the 10th journalist killed by the Israeli army in the Palestinian territories since the outbreak of the Palestinian Intifada or Uprising in late September 2000. One of them was an Italian photographer.

He said that more than 200 Palestinian and foreign journalists were directly targeted by the Israeli troops' gunfire as they were covering events and clashes between Israelis and Palestinians.

He called upon the International Federation of Journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists and the United Nations to interfere as soon as possible and send international forces to protect the Palestinians.

"If there is no immediate move by the international organizations to protect the journalists in the Palestinian territories, the Israeli army will keep killing and wounding them," said Abu Khousa.

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