Sunday, October 04, 2009

Israeli journalist 'sneaks' into Kurdistan

Israeli journalist Shani Haziza

An Israeli journalist was able to 'sneak' into Iraqi territory, despite the Iraqi government's policy of forbidding entry to Israelis, Tayeef Zayidni reports in al-Arabiya (14 September). The journalist travelled widely in Iraq; she came across many Jewish graveyards. This would not be the first time that an Israeli has entered Kurdistan: groups of Israeli tourists have apparently been on 'roots' trips. (With thanks for his translation: David K)

Remarkably, she did not sneak in through an unpatrolled point along a zone of the Iraqi border, but rather via an Iraqi-Turkish border crossing -- something forbidden by Iraqi law.

Shani Haziza, a correspondent and editor on the "Saturday News" program broadcasting on Israel's Channel Ten, explained that she traveled to Turkey intending to enter its southern border which is met by the northern border of Iraq. From there she was able to enter Iraqi territory unhindered, without even a stamp from the Iraqis on her passport (as an Israeli, she is denied entry to Iraq, making her trip illegal). Oshrat Cutler, a colleague of Haziza's, noted these details of the trip on the September 12th episode of the program.

Haziza said that she traveled in a number of Iraqi regions during her journalistic expedition, and indicated "the presence of a great number of Jewish graves in Iraq," noting that "Israelis can visit these graves once they are allowed to enter Iraq."

In her report, the Israeli journalist also referred to an active organization in northern Iraq which has called for Iraqi Jews' return to their former villages.

Read article (Arabic)

Kurdish commenters on this Point of No Return article confirm the existence of a Jewish family in Erbil, now under threat from jihadists.

No comments: