SUMMARY OF BBC NEWS WEBSITE PORTRAYAL OF ISRAEL AND THE PALESTINIANS – MARCH 2023

Throughout the month of March 2023, thirty-four written or filmed reports relating to Israel and/or the Palestinians appeared on the BBC News website’s ‘Middle East’ page, some of which were also published on other pages and five of which were carried over from the previous month.

(dates in brackets indicate the time period – Israel time – during which the item was available on the ‘Middle East’ page)

Seven items (four of which were carried from the previous month) concerned terrorism and counter-terrorism operations:

Israel and Palestinians pledge to reduce violence Yolande Knell (27/2/23 to 1/3/23) discussed here

Hawara West Bank: ‘What happened was horrific and barbaric’ Tom Bateman (28/2/23 to 2/3/23) discussed here

Israeli-American killed in West Bank as unrest intensifies George Wright (28/2/23 to 3/3/23) discussed here

Why is Israel-Palestinian violence surging? Raffi Berg (28/2/23 to 3/3/23) discussed here

Six Palestinians killed in Israeli army raid in Jenin Yolande Knell & Raffi Berg (7/3/23 to 12/3/23) discussed here

Israel believes roadside bombing suspect crossed from Lebanon Tom Bateman & David Gritten (15/3/23 to 19/3/23) discussed here

Jenin: Four Palestinians killed in Israeli raid David Gritten (17/3/23 to 19/3/23) discussed here

Two reports related to a trip to the UK by the Israeli prime minister:

Israel turmoil dogs Netanyahu’s UK trip Paul Adams (24/3/23 to present)

Israel’s Netanyahu meets Sunak at Downing Street amid protests Raffi Berg (24/3/24 to 28/3/23)

One item concerned a legal story:

UAE pardons Israeli woman who faced life in prison Charlene Anne Rodrigues (26/3/23 to 28/3/23)

Two reports had archaeological or historic themes:

Decoding oldest known sentence written in first alphabet (20/2/23 to present)

Oldest most complete Hebrew Bible goes on display in Israel before sale David Gritten (22/3/23 to 26/3/23) discussed here

Of twenty-two reports concerning Israeli affairs, seventeen concerned protests against the government’s proposed changes to the judicial system:

Israel police crack down on protests against judicial reforms Yolande Knell (1/3/23 to 6/3/23)

Israel’s elite fighter pilots escalate judicial reform protest Tom Bateman (6/3/23 to 9/3/23)

Israeli mass protests against reforms block roads and airport Tom Bateman & Raffi Berg (9/3/23 to 11/3/23) discussed here

Watch: On the ground at Israel’s mass protests (9/3/23 to present)

Israel sees one of its biggest-ever protests George Wright (12/3/23 to 15/3/23) discussed here

New Israel protests as Netanyahu rejects judicial reforms compromise Tom Bateman & David Gritten (16/3/23 to 20/3/23)

Israel protests: Thousands march against Netanyahu court reform (19/3/23 to 20/3/23 and 24/3/23 to present)

Israel’s Netanyahu to visit UK amid growing turmoil at home Tom Bateman (23/3/23 to 24/3/23)

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu vows to continue with legal reforms Anna Foster & David Gritten (24/3/23 to 28/3/23)

Halt Israel legal reform, urges defence minister (25/3/23 to 26/3/23)

Police water cannon strike down protesters in Israel (27/3/23 to present)

Mass Israel protests after Netanyahu fires defence minister Anna Foster & Antoinette Radford (27/3/23 to 28/3/23)

Israel’s Netanyahu delays judicial reforms after mass protests Live Page (27/3/23)

Israel judicial reform: Why is there a crisis? Raffi Berg (27/3/23 to present)

Israel protests: PM Netanyahu delays legal reforms after day of strikes Anna Foster & Marita Moloney (27/3/23 to 29/3/23)

Israel crisis a battle for country’s identity Tom Bateman (28/3/23 to 1/4/23) discussed here

Netanyahu rejects Biden’s call to drop Israel judicial overhaul Tom Bateman & David Gritten (29/3/23 to 1/4/23)

Three items related to government and parliamentary decisions:

Ban lifted on Israelis’ return to evacuated West Bank settlements Anna Foster & David Gritten (21/3/23 to 25/3/23) discussed here

Israel’s settlers change West Bank landscape with hilltop outposts Tim Franks (22/3/23 to present)

Israeli gun ownership rising as violence surges Michael Shuval & Rhodri Davies (30/3/23 to present) discussed here

One report concerned the death of an Israeli actor:

Chaim Topol: Fiddler on the Roof star dies aged 87 Paul Glynn (9/3/23 to 12/3/23)

One report concerned racism:

Israeli teachers’ racist WhatsApp chat caught by pupils Raffi Berg (13/3/23 to 19/3/23) discussed here

In addition – not included in our count – one item appeared in the ‘updates’ section underneath the ‘Middle East’ page but not on the page itself:

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s defiant leader Raffi Berg (27/3/23)

BBC audiences saw no reporting on internal Palestinian affairs during March, meaning that throughout the first quarter of 2023 only one item in that category (concerning a girls’ boxing club in Gaza) has appeared on the BBC News website.

Stories from PA and Hamas controlled areas that were ignored by the BBC during March include the arrest of a political activist and the arrest of a journalist, death sentences given out by Hamas, terror supporters at elections at a university in Hebron, shooting in the streets, a teachers’ strike, Hamas incitement ahead of Ramadan, an attack on German tourists in Nablus, the arrest of a journalist in Gaza, an attack on a mixed gender party in Jenin, the stabbing of a judge and rioting on the Gaza Strip border.

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SUMMARY OF BBC NEWS WEBSITE PORTRAYAL OF ISRAEL AND THE PALESTINIANS – FEBRUARY 2023

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