WATCH: IDF officer gets prison for throwing stones at journalists

The incident is not the first time Israeli security officials have been documented attacking journalists at West Bank protests, and in the village of Nabi Saleh.

An IDF officer videotaped throwing rocks at Israeli and Palestinian photojournalists last week was sentenced to two weeks in prison. A second officer was sentenced to 30 days confinement on base.

In a video first published by +972 and Activestills on Friday, a deputy company commander can be seen throwing rocks at a freelance Israeli photojournalist and a Palestinian photographer who works for Agence France‑Presse (AFP). One of the officers also tackled the Israeli photographer, Haim Schwarczenberg.

A brigade-level disciplinary hearing sentenced the two officers from the Kfir Brigade for their conduct, Haaretz reported.

Before watching video of the incident provided to it by +972, the IDF Spokesperson described the officers’ behavior toward the journalists as “reasonable force.”

After watching the +972 video, the military spokesperson said the incident would be looked into and later told Haaretz that “the behavior seen in the video is reprehensible.”

Although the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit provided +972 with two separate statements on the video last week, it has yet to respond to our queries following the sentencing of the two officers. This post will be updated if and when a response is received.

The incident is far from the first time Israeli security officials have been documented attacking journalists and human rights workers in Nabi Saleh and at other regular protests in the West Bank.

Israel is currently imprisoning or detaining 20 Palestinian journalists, including some who are held without charge or trial under administrative detention, according to the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate.

Late last year the Israeli cabinet approved a draft measure that would increase the criminal penalty for stone-throwing to 20 years in prison. The measure would not apply to the West Bank, however, which due to its status as occupied territory falls under military law.

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