UPDATE: After HRC lodged a complaint with the Toronto Star, the National Post, and La Presse for failing to properly label dead Palestinians as terrorists, The Toronto Star amended its post to acknowledge that the Palestinian fatalities were all “gunmen” and the National Post’s article was replaced with coverage of recent hostilities between Israel and Islamic Jihad. Regrettably, La Presse declined to take any corrective action.
On May 6, two Palestinian terrorists were killed during an IDF raid on the Nur Shams refugee camp, when the terrorists – armed with guns – tried to flee and evade arrest and were shot and killed. Both were responsible for a shooting attack last week that left an Israeli man injured near the “west bank” settlement of Avnei Hefetz.
That information, however, did not make it into several Canadian news organization’s headlines, as the National Post, Toronto Star, and La Presse newspapers featured headlines that could lead readers to wrongly conclude that the dead Palestinians were innocent civilians.
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In sharp contrast, the Associated Press reported that the dead Palestinians were members of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, which the Canadian government regards as a terrorist organization. Meanwhile, the Times of Israel reports that the terrorists: “Kharyoush and al-Shafei were claimed as members of the so-called Tulkarem Battalion, a new loosely organized Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group wing in the West Bank city.”
It’s important to note that the Reuters wire service has also prominently acknowledged in its headline that the two dead Palestinians were “militants” and its coverage described the gunmen as “fighters.” We also recognize that CP24 labelled the dead Palestinians as “militants.”
Moving forward, it’s of the utmost importance for La Presse, the Toronto Star and the National Post to identify and distinguish in its headlines whether dead Palestinians killed in hostilities with Israel are combatants or civilians, failing which, readers may be misled into thinking that Israeli forces killed non-combatants.
HonestReporting Canada has conveyed these concerns directly to the aforementioned news outlets.