Indy ignores deadly Palestinian terror, but rushes to pronounce settlers guilty in lethal rock-attack

The Independent was one of three British media outlets that failed to cover two recent Palestinian terror attacks that claimed the lives of three Israelis, but was quick to publish a story about a rock-throwing attack in the West Bank over the weekend that claimed the life of a Palestinian woman – an attack, relatives claim, was carried out by settlers. However, not only did the Indy jump on the story, but immediately pronounced the settlers guilty, despite the fact that the incident is still under investigation and there aren’t currently any suspects.

Cross posted from UK Media Watch

We recently noted that the Indy was one of three British media outlets which failed to cover the two recent Palestinian terror attacks that claimed the lives of three Israelis – Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, Ziv Hajbi, and Ari Fuld – but did find time to report on other Israel related stories.

By contrast, the Indy on Saturday night was quick to publish a story about a rock-throwing attack in the West Bank that claimed the life of a Palestinian woman – an attack, relatives claim, was carried out by settlers.  However, not only did the Indy jump on the story, but immediately pronounced the settlers guilty, despite the fact that the incident is still under investigation and there aren’t any suspects.

Here’s our tweet to the Indy journalist, Samuel Osborne.

Here’s the opening sentence of the Oct. 14th article:

Palestinian woman has been killed after being struck in the head by a stone thrown by Israeli settlers.

However, as other media outlets made clear, claims are based on testimony by the victim’s relatives who  didn’t actually see the perpetrators. 

Note Reuters’ far more careful and accurate headline on the incident:

Here’s Reuters’ equally cautious opening sentence:

Israeli police said on Saturday they were investigating the death of a Palestinian woman in the occupied West Bank, after her husband said he suspected Israeli settlers had pelted their car with rocks.

Though the Shin Bet has opened an investigation into the incident, and the accusations may ultimately turn out to be true, to report that the settlers are guilty as if it’s an established fact is inconsistent with the accuracy clause of the Editors’ Code, which requires that media outlets “distinguish clearly between…conjecture and fact”.

We’ve filed a complaint with Indy editors.

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