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Stockholm- Skyline International is deeply concerned over threats directed to a Palestinian journalist from members of the Palestinian security services, calling on the Palestinian government to open a serious and transparent investigation to determine the repercussions of these threats.

In its statement today, Monday, Skyline stated that it has complete information indicating that the independent Palestinian journalist "Nidal Al-Natsheh" was threatened by some individuals working in the Palestinian security services. Al-Natsheh received threats as he published a video clip documenting the security forces' assault on the demonstrators who marched in solidarity with the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in Occupied Jerusalem.

İn his testimony to Skyline, Al- Natsheh stated, "the events began when I went on Saturday evening, May 7, to the Bab al-Zawiya area to cover the confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers at the al-Shuhada Street checkpoint. We were surprised that the National Security Force arrived to disperse demonstrators, and immediately I documented its assault against some young man. This force used force against the demonstrators and arrested one of them."

He added, "I posted the video clip that showed the National Security Force's attack on the demonstrators via my Facebook account. This prompted the security services to declare their presence was to settle a dispute between demonstrators, which did not happen at all."

Nidal also stated, "A journalist close to the Palestinian security authorities contacted me and asked me to delete the video that I documented, claiming that what happened was a dispute between youngmen there, which I did not accept. I asked him for an official permit to meet one of the security leaders to conduct a press interview.

Indeed, the journalist contacted me and told me to go to one of the offices of the Palestinian Activists Association to conduct the press interview. Still, to my surprise, I found three young men attacked in the incident that I documented. They immediately insulted me and told me that there was no argument between them and the Palestinian security. They also accused me of being a threat to their lives, claiming that I photographed them throwing stones at the Israeli soldiers.

Al-Natsheh continued saying, "In a short period, an officer from the National Security, officers from the Palestinian Military Intelligence, and people affiliated to Fatah came to the place where I was. There were 30 men in total. Those individuals told me that the National Security Forces did not attack people but rather resolve disputes between demonstrators. They also didn't allow me to practice my job as a journalist and finish the interview. Also, they threatened to prosecute me by the regular and tribal courts. Furthermore, members of the Fatah movement threatened me with retaliation if I ever cover any event or demonstration again in the future and my equipment would be confiscated and destroyed, among other threats."

Nidal concluded his testimony by stressing, "Security forces personnel forced me to edit my post on Facebook, as one of the individuals drafted a leaflet containing the story published by the security services and sent it to me for publication. I responded to their request due to pressure, indirect threat, and the lack of legal guarantees that would provide me protection at that place, but I deleted the post after I left. "

Skyline has gathered this testimony, as well as many other cases, where Palestinian journalists had reported suffering intimidations and threats for doing their job from the Palestinian Security Services. Accordingly, Skyline director Daniel F. Rivera stated that interfering in reporters' work and harassing journalists is a crime against article 19 of the Palestinian Constitution. Journalists must have the freedom and safety to perform their job without restrictions, threats, or prosecution, as stipulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Skyline stressed that summoning the journalist outside the legal framework, threatening and forcing him to change what he published and documented constitutes a severe violation that requires urgent action by the Palestinian government.

Skyline calls on Palestinian officials, including the Palestinian Prime Minister, Mahmoud Abbas, acting as Minister of Interior, to issue an order to open a serious investigation into these cases. It is paramount to know the extent and repercussions of these aggressions against journalists. It is crucial to bring violators to justice and promote a different culture that guarantees safety and respect for the work of journalists. The Palestinian government is obligated to implement international agreements that guarantee freedom of opinion and expression.