Strike That Killed Reuters Journalist Was ‘Apparently Deliberate’ Israeli Attack, Group Says #Strike #Killed #Reuters #Journalist #Apparently #Deliberate #Israeli #Attack #Group

An Oct. 13 strike that killed a videographer for the Reuters news agency and injured six others in southern Lebanon was carried out by the Israeli military and appeared to be a deliberate attack, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday.

The watchdog group said that evidence it had reviewed — including dozens of videos of the incident, photographs and satellite images, and interviews with witnesses and military experts — showed that the journalists were not near areas where fighting was taking place and that there was no military objective near their position.

“The attack on the journalists’ position directly targeted them,” the report said, labeling the attack a war crime.

The Israeli authorities did not immediately respond to the report.

Reuters published its own investigation on Thursday and said that an Israeli tank crew had killed its journalist and wounded the others.

“The evidence we now have, and have published today, shows that an Israeli tank crew killed our colleague Issam Abdallah,” the Reuters editor-in-chief, Alessandra Galloni, said in a statement. She called on Israel “to explain how this could have happened and to hold to account those responsible.”

On Oct. 13, a week after Hamas attacks on Israel sparked an all-out war, the seven journalists from Reuters, Al Jazeera and Agence France-Presse, the French news agency, were standing on a hilltop in southern Lebanon close to the border with Israel. They were filming and broadcasting cross-border shelling between the Israeli army and Lebanese militants allied with Hamas.

The report said that the journalists were wearing antiballistic jackets marked “Press” and a car marked “TV.” They had been at that position for more than an hour and were visible from an Israeli military location more than a mile away, the report said.

The report said that two munitions, fired within 37 seconds of each other, killed Mr. Abdallah, and injured the six others. A car belonging to Al Jazeera was destroyed.

Ramzi Kaiss, a researcher for Human Rights Watch, said in a statement that it was an “apparently deliberate attack on civilians and thus a war crime.”

In a separate report, which contained some of the same information, the human rights group Amnesty International said that the journalists were stationary and that their markings “should have provided sufficient information to Israeli forces that these were journalists and civilians and not a military target.”

It said they would have been visible to Israeli forces on the other side of the border, as well as to an Israeli military helicopter and likely an Israeli drone that were flying overhead around the time of the attack.

The Amnesty report concluded that Mr. Abdallah was killed by a tank round fired from Israel. The second strike, it said, was from a different Israeli weapon, likely a small guided missile.

The incident was “likely a direct attack on civilians that must be investigated as a war crime,” the statement said.

At a news conference in Beirut to publicize the findings, Mr. Abdallah’s mother, Fatemah Qanso Abdallah, said that the report had given her some relief, though she questioned whether it would result in accountability.

“We will keep calling for justice,” she said, but added: “I’m afraid that these killings will be forgotten.”

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