5 April 2002

Attempted Break-in by Journalists to the "Mukata’a" Compound in Contravention of the Closed Military Order
(Communicated by the IDF Spokesman)

A group of journalists has attempted to break into the Mukata’a compound in Ramallah, in contravention of the closed military order imposed by the local military commander, this in accordance with the political directive to isolate the area.

IDF forces have attempted to distance the journalists while hurling concussion grenades in their direction.

The IDF Spokesperson wishes to clarify that the use of concussion grenades was done in order to distance the journalists as well as to minimalize the possibility that they could be hurt.

The IDF Spokesperson emphasizes that the closed military order is applicable to all persons, including media personnel, since fighting against terrorist elements is being conducted in the area. The IDF is fighting against terrorist elements and not against the innocent population. The purpose of the prohibition on the movement of civilians is to protect local residents and foreigners situated in the area.