By CARA CHANG, age 12
Janna Jihad Ayyad is a ten-year-old reporter who lives in the West Bank in the occupied Palestinian territories. She records videos on her camera and reports on social media about what is happening in her village.
Janna is reporting from one of the most dangerous places in the world. For decades, the Israeli and Palestinian people have been fighting over areas of land occupied by the country of Israel.
Janna started reporting with her mom’s iPhone at age seven, when her Palestinian friend was killed by an Israeli soldier in the West Bank. As she got older, she realized that no one was reporting on what was happening in her village.
“I’m living and growing in these circumstances,” Janna said in an interview with Al Jazeera in April. “So I must film and report the events like any other news reporter and spread it to the world.” A recent video on Facebook features Janna interviewing a sixth-grade girl about daily life in their village.
Critics argue Janna is putting herself in danger and that since she’s only ten, she isn’t trustworthy. Janna has also been criticized by right-wing bloggers as being a tool for propaganda.
Janna says she just wants to give events that take place in her village a global platform. “The camera is stronger than the gun,” Janna ex- plained in her interview with Al Jazeera. “I can send my message to small people, and they can send it to others.”
Palestine: A territory in the Middle East on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea
Propaganda: Information, often misleading, that is used to promote a particular point of view