By Abdullah Boqas
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 18 (KUNA) -- A coalition of media institutions and organizations in Malaysia called Save Press 4 Gaza (SP4G) Saturday organized a demonstration in which dozens of journalists participated in central Kuala Lumpur, calling for the protection of journalists working in the Gaza Strip and conflict areas.
Speaking to KUNA, SP4G Chief Sairin Nafis said that the coalition is the unified voice of all Malaysian media regarding what is happening to journalists, correspondents, and photographers amid the destruction and chaos occurring in Gaza.
Nafis expressed deep concern about the losses suffered by media professionals covering the conflict in Gaza, where at least 42 journalists have been killed since last October 7, noting that this has been the bloodiest for media professionals since 1992, as reported by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
He held Western media responsible for any speech that might contribute to justifying the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, noting that it is the responsibility of the international media to maintain journalistic integrity and ensure fair and accurate coverage of the ongoing conflict.
In a statement, SP4G strongly condemned the targeting of journalists and their families by the Israeli occupation forces and government, calling on Western media to ensure clear coverage of Israeli actions against the Palestinians and acknowledge the atrocities.
The findings of the Committee to Protect Journalists confirm the urgent need to put an end to violence, including violence against journalists in Gaza, the statement added, mentioning that journalists not only face risks in preparing reports, but also face difficult conditions of power outages and lack of food and water as well as a collapsing medical system.
The deliberate targeting of journalists raises further concern, which is evident in the investigation conducted by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) into the October 13 Israeli strikes in southern Lebanon, the statement said, adding that "such incidents further highlight the urgent need for international action to protect journalists operating in conflict zones."
SP4G confirmed that it is cooperating with media institutions and organizations around the world, including the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate (PJS), RSF, Arab and Middle Eastern Journalists Association (AMEJA), and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), to demand commitment from Israel to end violence against journalists and civilians.
It urged international bodies to facilitate an immediate ceasefire and provide aid to help the remaining residents of Gaza and other affected areas, reiterating the importance of defending the safety and protection of journalists, supporting the principles of freedom of the press, and strengthening a global media scene that values truth and justice above all else.
Recently formed by 26 news organizations in Malaysia, SP4G includes the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), Crime Journalists Association, Foreign Correspondents Club of Malaysia (FCCM), and others. (end)