World’s press condemns killing of Shireen Abu Akleh in Palestine

2022-05-11. Prominent Al Jazeera correspondent was reporting from the occupied West Bank town of Jenin when she was shot and critically wounded.

by Andrew Heslop andrew.heslop@wan-ifra.org | May 11, 2022

Shireen Abu Akleh, prominent Palestinian-American journalist and veteran correspondent of the conflict between Israel and Palestine, was shot while reporting on a military raid in the Jenin refugee camp.

She was taken to hospital but succumbed to her injuries shortly afterwards.

Despite being clearly identifiable as press and wearing personal protective equipment, including a helmet, Abu Akleh was shot in the head in what Al Jazeera is claiming was a targeted killing.

Al Jazeera said in a statement that it held the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) responsible, following reports from colleagues and journalists from other media organisations who were present at the scene. Al Jazeera producer Ali Samodi was also wounded in the incident.

The Israeli military confirmed its soldiers had retaliated after being caught in heavy fire but denied it had deliberately targeted the journalist. In addition, Israeli prime minister, Naftali Bennett, claimed there was high probability that the fatal shots that killed Shireen Abu Akleh “were fired by armed Palestinians.”

WAN-IFRA and the World Editors Forum call for a thorough investigation by both the Israeli and Palestinian authorities to determine the cause of this tragic death. “Those responsible must be held to account for this egregious violation of international law, if indeed it is determined that Shireen Abu Akleh was deliberately targeted for her work as a journalist.”

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