SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom - Samir Kassir Foundation

Journalist Nidal Ikhbaria survives shooting attempt at home in Umm al-Fahm

Tuesday , 15 June 2021

On June 9, 2021, unidentified people in the Arab-majority city of Umm al-Fahm fired more than 50 bullets into the home of journalist Nidal Ikhbaria, an editor at the local news website Baladtna, according to a report by his employer, a post by the journalist on his personal Facebook page, and statements by the local press freedom groups SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Rights and the I’lam Center for Media Freedom, Development, and Research.

Ikhbaria told SKeyes that he was home with his wife and daughter at the time, and said that bullets passed very close to them, but no one was injured in the attack. He also toldSKeyes that he had not received any threats prior to the attack, and said he had “no enemies.”

Israeli police are investigating the attack, according to those reports. After the publication this article, the Israeli police spokesperson’s office emailed a statement to CPJ confirming that authorities had opened an investigation; the statement said that police were treating the attack “harshly” and would be examining all possible leads.


Baladtna is a privately owned website that covers local news in the Umm al-Fahm and Wadi Ara areas, including art exhibitions, local crime, and police arrests of local activists.

Ikhbaria also posts political commentary on his personal Facebook account, where he has about 2,000 followers. The day before the attack, he published a post criticizing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, and Mansour Abbas, the leader of the Israeli Arab political party United Arab List.

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