Paris, 21 March 2023
The case of four Arabic-speaking journalists audited and sanctioned by France24 and its umbrella company France Médias Monde is provoking ripples throughout French media.
The newspaper of record, Le Monde, reported that “The French international channel had been berated by the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, alerted by a CAMERA investigation report...”
Le Monde continued, “France24 was the recipient... of an open letter [from Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels], in which ‘the international Jewish organization fighting for human rights’... said it was ‘shocked by the antisemitism shown by the correspondents of [the broadcaster’s Arabic] channel’.'’
The most outspoken journalist – who had glorified Hitler, calling for violence and genocide against Israel and the Jews – had been fired and sued. The other three have been warned and “the continuation of their collaboration with the channel will depend on their compliance” with an updated set of rules on unbiased and correct reporting. They are “expected to clearly adhere to it…” According to Samuels, this could mean “allowing three of the four to get away with it!”
Le Monde’s article raised also the question of “lack of management of correspondents”, especially freelancers of locally-outsourced companies, that were virtually untouchable.
“Unbiased reporting requires a global approach by the media business. Guaranteeing that each ring of the chain is accountable – from freelance correspondents to their outsourcing companies, from single channels to their networks – is a vast enterprise, but will be a blow to the purveyors of hate,” concluded Samuels.
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