The Associated Press’ top editor on Sunday called for an independent investigation into the Israeli air strike that destroyed a Gaza City building housing AP, broadcaster Al-Jazeera and other media.
Sally Buzbee, AP’s executive editor, said the Israeli government has yet to provide clear evidence supporting its attack, which leveled the 12-story Al-Jalaa tower.
The IDF, which gave AP journalists and other tenants about an hour to evacuate, said Hamas used the building for a military intelligence office and weapons development.
Buzbee said the AP has had offices in al-Jalaa tower for 15 years and never was informed or had any indication that Hamas might be in the building. She said the facts must be laid out.
“We are in a conflict situation,” Buzbee said. “We do not take sides in that conflict. We heard Israelis say they have evidence; we don’t know what that evidence is.”
“We think it’s appropriate at this point for there to be an independent look at what happened yesterday — an independent investigation,” she added.
Buzbee said AP journalists were “rattled” after the air strike but are doing fine and reporting the news. She expressed concern about the impact on news coverage.
“This does impact the world’s right to know what is happening on both sides of the conflict in real time,” she said.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Saturday he is “deeply disturbed” by the air strike on a building containing the international media outlets.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke on Saturday with Gary Pruitt, the President and CEO of the Associated Press, and “offered his unwavering support for independent journalists and media organizations around the world and noted the indispensability of their reporting in conflict zones. He expressed relief that the Associated Press team on the ground in Gaza remains safe.”
Source: Elad Benari – Arutz Sheva