JERUSALEM (Dec. 18)
The Israel press struggle against Government restrictions on news-gathering was extended today when the Parliamentary Correspondents Association voted to consider a total boycott of Knesset coverage.
The Parliamentary correspondents, meeting a few days after an earlier dispute over a Civil Service order barring government workers from giving information to reporters, met to consider new “security” regulations which bar access to any place in the Knesset building except to the press gallery, which is separated from the floor of the Knesset by a half-inch thick bullet-proof glass barrier.
The correspondents said these restrictions made it impossible for them to carry out their public responsibility. They decided to ask the National Journalists Association, with which they are affiliated, to approve a ban on Knesset news coverage until the restrictions were removed.
Israel editors of daily newspapers also met today to discuss the restriction on journalists’ visits to the Knesset restaurant. The editors agreed on a number of actions to be taken if the restrictive regulations were not removed. One action will be the calling of protest meetings in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem. The editors also nominated a “special action committee” with the power “to take all steps necessary to preserve freedom of the press.”