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March 10, 2010

EUobserver's Misobservation on Palestinian Civilian Casualties

EUobserver.com bills itself as "[e]ditorially independent, open-minded and balanced" and "the trusted source of EU related news and information across the European Union."

It was therefore disappointing to see this wildly inflated figure for Palestinian civilian casualties given in a photo caption on the site.

EU Observer inflated casualties small.jpg

While the number of Palestinian civilians killed in Operation Cast Lead last year is disputed, not even Palestinian sources put the number at 1,400. The Palestinian Center for Human Rights, whose statistics on Palestinian civilian casualties are grossly inflated, placed the figure at 1,167. A report by the Arab League on the Gaza Strip violence stated that at least 850 of those killed were civilian.

Hamas claims that the total number of Palestinian casualties from Operation Cast Lead, including combatants and civilians, was 1,444. Israel says the total number of Palestinian casualties, civilian and combatant, is 1,166, of which 709 were identified terrorists belonging to Hamas and other terror groups. Israel's figure for the number of civilian Palestinian casualties is 295.

In September, the International Herald Tribune corrected a nearly identical error. Will EUobserver now likewise correct? The good news is that the site promises that it "promptly corrects factual errors and welcomes comments and information that may call for correction." The bad news is that there are only two posted corrections, the most recent one dated April 23, 2008.

Posted by TS at March 10, 2010 04:29 AM

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