“Criminal charges should be filed, and Charles Enderlin should never be allowed to practice journalism in Israel again. The fact the al-Dura story has turned out to be a hoax should cause us to take action against those who invented and spread this staged fable. Israel’s Government Press Office should also revoke France 2’s credentials” – this according to Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, director of Shurat HaDin – Israel Law Center.
Late on Sunday, the Israeli government released a report which found France 2’s claims that troops killed the Palestinian boy Mohammed al-Dura in 2000 as baseless. The committee’s findings stressed that there were many signs the boy wasn’t even shot. The report also noted the lack of blood stains at the scene. Enderlin’s television report, airing on Sept 30, 2000, claimed the boy came under fire from Israeli snipers, even as Enderlin was not at the scene and unaired raw footage would later show the boy still alive.
Darshan-Leitner: “In 2007 we argued at the High Court in Jerusalem that France 2’s credentials be canceled, but the press office cited they had a lack of authority to do so. Now that the government has determined we were right, it’s time France 2’s bureau chief be prosecuted. Enderlin’s report became a symbol of the second Intifada and a modern-day blood libel directly resulting in hundreds of Jewish and Arab deaths, only for the purpose of raising France 2’s ratings.”
Darshan-Leitner added that “The French network ignited a still-burning torch of hatred against Israel, with images of al-Dura still being presented in anti-Israel protests in Iran, the Arab world and in Western Europe. Those who are responsible must bear the consequences of their actions in order to avoid the repetition of incidents like this and, moreover, to stop this blood libel once and for all.”
A 2003 government committee found that images of al-Dura’s death had an enormous impact on the beginning of the October 2000 riots which ended in the deaths of 13 Israeli-Arab demonstrators.
Shurat HaDin – Israel Law Center is an Israel-based organization dedicated to enforcing basic human rights through the legal system and represents victims of terrorism in courtrooms around the world. Its clients include American, European, and Israeli citizens. It is unaffiliated with any political party or governmental body.