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Journalists protest PM’s no-questions policy, cite lack of transparency

CM 11/08/2021 1

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The Journalists Association and the political and health reporters’ cells turned on Wednesday to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz and expressed indignation that the two’s press announcements did not include time for reporters to ask questions.
“Since you have been elected to your positions you have addressed the public in areas related to the coronavirus, restrictions related to the pandemic and other topics,” the journalists wrote in a letter. “These addresses are usually conducted as public announcements, and do not allow reporters to ask questions,” they said.
“Journalists are not nuisances that need to be cast away, as the Health Minister would clearly agree since he was a senior journalist himself,” they added. “Journalists serve the public interest and act to insure the public’s right to know.”

The association stressed that in order for reporters to carry out their job properly, they must be given access to as much information as possible, which includes asking questions, no matter how difficult or complex.
“Democratic governments differ from others in transparency, among other things,” the journalists wrote. 
They concluded, “Announcements to the press that are conducted one-sidedly without the presence of reporters and without allowing questions does not advance transparency and does not contribute to building trust in the governmental system.”  

Source: Jerusalem Post

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