A security officer at the Grand Millennium Hotel in Basra assaulted Fadel Hassan Al-Battat, a TV reporter. At the same time, journalists launched a social media campaign to discourage people from attending events at this hotel.
Journalists reported to the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory (JFO) that "a security officer beat fellow reporter Fadel Al-Battat at the Millennium Hotel on Thursday evening, November 17, 2022, after he attempted to enter the hotel to cover a press conference held by the Iraqi Football Association to comment on the canceled match with the Costa Rica national team."
In reaction to the violation of our colleague Fadel Al-Battat, journalists in Basra later initiated a campaign (#boycottit).
After journalist Fadel Hassan was assaulted, reporter Ehab Al-Maliki stated, "Basra journalists are initiating a campaign (#boycottit) to boycott coverage of government and sports events at the Grand Millennium Hotel."
JFO condemns the assault on journalist Fadel Al-Battat and urges on the Basra government to investigate the incident and bring those responsible to account.
JFO renews its call to government entities and security agencies in the public and private sectors to respect journalists' work and stop violations against media personnel, as the continued impunity of those responsible for the violations will contribute to the increase of mistrust between journalists and the authorities in question.
This is the second identical assault by hotel security on a journalist in less than a week since the reporter of Zagros TV channel, and another cameraman were subjected to a similar assault by the guard of "Crystal" Hotel in Erbil earlier this week.