February 21, 2002 - Updated on January 20, 2016

Israeli army blows up The Voice of Palestine building in Gaza

Tsahal has yet again attacked the Palestinian media by blowing up The Voice of Palestine's building in Gaza. RSF is indignant at this deliberate policy aimed at muzzling the Palestinian Authority's media.
In a letter addressed to Defence Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, Reporters sans frontières (Reporters Without Borders - RSF) expressed its indignation at the destruction by Tsahal of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation building, The Voice of Palestine, in Gaza. "We are protesting against this policy of deliberate elimination of any official Palestinian viewpoint of the conflict. A month ago, the Israeli army destroyed the building of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation in Ramallah; today the Gaza station has been blown up. The Israeli government is really doing everything to silence the media of the Palestinian Authority", declared Robert Menard, secretary general of RSF. According to RSF's information, on the morning of 21 February, the Israeli army blew up the building that housed the broadcasting system of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation in eastern Gaza. Khaled al-Siam, the director of the station, told the Agence France-Presse that Israeli soldiers had placed explosives on two floors of the building after having taken out the documents and technical equipment. The explosion was so strong that the entire building collapsed. At night, Israeli tanks had penetrated two kilometres into the Gaza city, entering from three different directions, according to the heads of the Palestinian security services. The Israeli authorities often accuse The Voice of Palestine of encouraging violence against Israel. On 19 January, the Israeli army had blown up the Palestinian broadcasting building in Ramallah. A column of Tsahal tanks had surrounded the seven-story building that housed The Voice of Palestine. The Palestinian employees had left the building a few minutes earlier. The Israeli army had confiscated some of the equipment. Then soldiers had carried out a bomb attack on the studios and offices. The explosion had destroyed most of the building. Despite this attack, The Palestinian radio station had continued to produce and broadcast its programming from private radio stations in the West Bank.