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Israel Arrests Bil’in Journalist

UPDATE, October 11th, 4.25pm: Emad’s attorney Gaby Laski informs us that at the appeal hearing held today, the Israeli military decided to launch an indictment against Emad. The judge will make a ruling tomorrow at 4pm.

UPDATE, October 10th: At a hearing today at Ofer military court the judge ordered Emad to be released, but the Israeli military appealed this decision and said he should be held for a further 72 hours. The judge gave the army 24 hours to mount an appeal, which will be held tomorrow.


Emad Mohammad Bornat of the village of Bil’in, video photographer for Reuters and documentary film maker, was arrested on Friday October 6th, 2006 by a Israeli Border Police unit that entered the village, firing rubber bullets and sound grenades. Emad is being held in Israeli military custody and will be brought in front of a judge at Ofer military base tomorrow Tuesday the 10th of October.

Emad, who was filming at the time, was arrested by an Israeli Border policeman. When Emad arrived at the police station in Givat Zeev, he was wounded. The Border Police soldiers claimed a radio “fell” on him in the jeep, on the way to the station. He was taken to the Hadassah – Har Hatzofim hospital and was then taken back to the police station in Givat Zeev. After he was interrogated, the police refused to view the tapes that Emad filmed. Emad is accused of “assault on an officer” and of stone throwing and was sent to the Etzion prison. Israeli Border Police have in the past been rebuked by military judges on false testimonies towards arrested Palestinian demonstrators and their Israeli supporters.

Emad has tirelessly documented the struggle of his village against the wall and settlements, and is known by many other professionals with whom he works and cooperates, giving them video material for their films and reports. He is a man of peace and a dedicated and responsible video-photo-journalist. His video footage has been broadcast throughout the world, showing the demonstrations against the wall Israel is constructing on his village’s land. It shows the routine, and often brutal, violence of the Israeli military in general and the Border Police in particular on the demonstrations, especially as used against Palestinians.

For more information:

Attorney Gaby Laski: 054 449 18988
Mohammed Khatib: 054 557 3285
Shai Polack: 054 533 3364