Why is a site exposing human rights abuses in Gaza under attack?

Why is a site exposing human rights abuses in Gaza under attack?

The Israeli NGO B'Tselem works to expose human rights abuses in the occupied territories.

But its website, which contains reports on incidents in Gaza and the West Bank as well as testimonies from people in the region (including those in southern Israel coping with rocket attacks), keeps on getting attacked.

Speaking to i100, B'Tselem spokesperson Osnat Skoblinski said the attacks had also affected the group's email.

She explained the website has had "many DDoS [distributed denial of service, which take a website offline] attacks from an unknown source" in the past few days.

It was down for five days last week, at the height of the conflict between Israel and Gaza.

The DDoS attacks come shortly after a fake death notice was issued for another spokesperson, Sarit Michaeli.

Skoblinski told i100: “We take threats like the fake death notice about Sarit Michaeli very seriously. We filed a complaint with the police and the Ministry of Justice."

She went on:

The current mood in Israel is very hostile to any positions that don’t express automatic support of government policy, even positions that merely try to express basic human empathy for Palestinian suffering in Gaza.

B’Tselem, as an organisation that expresses a leading voice in this context at this time in Israel, has found that it is facing a wave of incitement and threats – a situation that has not deterred us, nor will it deter us, from carrying on with our work on behalf of human rights.

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