“Present during the Hamas massacre on 7 October”, storm on 4 photojournalists

The Israeli authorities have asked for explanations from the newspapers that collaborate with the four photojournalists from Gaza. Meanwhile, denials have arrived from the Reuters and AP news agencies

Photojournalists from international media were reportedly present during the massacre perpetrated in Israel by Hamas on October 7. This was reported by HonestReporting, a site that monitors anti-Israeli prejudice in the international media. The Israeli authorities have asked the newspapers involved for explanations, but in the meantime they have received denials from the Reuters and AP news agencies.

According to HonestReporting, four photojournalists from Gaza who work for the international agencies Associated Press and Reuters, but also as freelancers for CNN and the New York Timesdocumented the horrors of the October 7 massacre, including the killing of civilians. A photojournalist, identified as Hassan Eslaiah, allegedly photographed an Israeli tank on fire and Hamas men entering Kibbutz Kfar Aza, one of the main sites of the massacre of civilians. HonestReporting then also published a photo in which Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar kisses Eslaiah.

L’The Israeli government’s press office sent an urgent request for explanations to the newspapers involved, “regarding HonestReporting’s disturbing revelations about their photographers’ involvement in the events of October 7, which crossed every red line, professional and moral.” “Journalists who knew about the massacre and still chose to remain passive while children were massacred are no different from terrorists and should be treated as such.“, Israeli minister Benny Gantz, who is part of the war cabinet, wrote on the social network X. While the head of the Israeli opposition, Yair Lapid, asked on in advance of Hamas’ intentions.

AP and Reuters have publicly denied having had advance knowledge of the October 7 massacre. AP noted that Eslaiah worked with the agency on a freelance basis in the past, but no longer. “The first images AP received from freelancers were taken more than an hour after the attack began. None of the AP staff were at the border or crossed the border at any time“, specifies a statement from the agency.

Reuters denied that its journalists were on site or that they were “embedded” following Hamas, adding that he purchased photos from two freelancers in Gaza. The images were taken two hours after the first rocket launch and 45 minutes after the Hamas men entered Israel. Meanwhile, CNN told the Ynet news site that it had decided to break off all relations with Eslaiah“despite there being no reason to doubt the journalistic accuracy of the work he has done.”