CNN has removed correspondent Diana Magnay from covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict after she referred to a group of Israelis cheering missile strikes in Gaza as “scum.”
Magnay appeared on CNN Thursday from a hill overlooking the Israel-Gaza border. During her on-air report, Magnay pointed out the trail of rockets that could be seen leaving Israeli positions to take out Hamas.
“It is an astonishing, macabre and awful thing to watch this display of fire in the air,” she told CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer, who is in Jerusalem.
“I think you can probably see there are lots of Israelis gathered around who are cheering when they see these kinds of Israeli strikes,” she noted.
Magnay took to Twitter to express her outrage after the Israelis “threatened to destroy” her crew’s car if the British reporter said something “wrong.” Moments later, she deleted the tweet.
“She deeply regrets the language used, which was aimed directly at those who had been targeting our crew,” the spokeswoman continued. “She certainly meant no offense to anyone beyond that group, and she and CNN apologize for any offense that may have been taken.”
The spokeswoman said Magnay has been assigned to Moscow.
The removal of Magnay comes a day after NBC News pulled Ayman Mohyeldin from Gaza.
The day before his removal, Mohyeldin reported on the deaths of four Palestinian boys. Mohyeldin tweeted Wednesday about having just played soccer with the children killed on the beach near several hotels where foreign journalists are staying. He covered their parents’ reaction on both Facebook and Instagram.
Mohyeldin’s account was later broadcast on “NBC Nightly News.”
“The attack – and its heartrending aftermath – was witnessed by NBC News. Moments earlier, the boys were playing soccer with journalists on the beach,” Mohyeldin’s report said.
NBC News executives are citing “security concerns” as the reason for his removal. However, the network immediately assigned chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel to Gaza.
One of Mohyeldin’s tweets and Facebook posts were recently deleted, a move that has fueled speculation that his social media use could have been the cause for his removal.
Mohyeldin, an Egyptian-American journalist who is fluent in Arabic, started at NBC News in Washington in 2001 and later worked for Fox News and CNN. He joined Al Jazeera English and became a TV news star covering the 2011 Arab Spring upheaval. That April, he was named one of Time’s 100 most influential people, and a few months later he was hired by NBC News.