Several parallel investigations are being carried out into the fatal shooting of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, which occurred in May this year. Now the UN has determined that Israeli forces are to blame for her death. Photo: Alisdare Hickson. Source: Flickr.


Several parties point to Israeli forces as guilty of journalists' deaths in the West Bank

Din 11. May the journalist was shot Shireen Abu Akhleh, employed on the Arabic-language television channel Al-Jazeera, dead on the West Bank. Since then, it has been going on several parallel investigations to sort out the debt issue. Now the UN has determined that it was Israeli forces that killed the journalist.  

Since the fatal shooting, which took place in the Palestinian city of Jenin, several different parties have stated who they believe are to blame for the death. Al-Jazeera early condemned the shooting and pointed to Israel's military forces (IDF) as guilty. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas also blamed Israel for the death of Shireen Abu Akleh. states the BBC. The iIsraeli Prime Minister Naphthali Bennett claimed, on the other hand, that the investigation that Israel initially carried out showed that the exchange of fire leading to the death was carried out by Palestinians.

Israel has wanted to conduct a joint investigation into the fatal shooting, but Palestinian representatives believe that Israel has had a lack of capacity to investigate its own security forces, and they have therefore refused to participate. states SVT.

On June 20, the New York Times published that after a month-long investigation, they conclude that Shireen Abu Akleh's death can most likely be traced to shots fired by Israeli forces.

A few days later, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released an investigation that also confirmed to Israeli forces shot dead Shireen Abu Akleh. Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, sharply criticizes the Israeli authorities for how the incident has been handled and urges them to launch a criminal investigation as soon as possible.

Parallel investigations are underway - also in journalism

While the Israeli and Palestinian authorities disagree on where the evidence leads, several other investigations are being conducted by various independent organizations. Journalist network Bellingcat has analyzed material in both audio and video form that has been obtained from social media from Palestinians as well as Israeli military sources, according to SVT. The leader of Bellingcat's analysis work, Giancarlo Fiorella, believes that the IDF has both been closest and had the clearest line of fire to Abu Akleh, but that more technical evidence is needed to provide a completely definite answer.

Eyewitness denies the trace of the accident

In a CNN interview with Shatha Hanaysha, Abu Akleh's journalist colleague and one of the event's foremost eyewitnesses, a video filmed by civilians is shown in which both journalists walk in a seemingly quiet area. Dressed in a safety helmet and bulletproof vests with "Press" written over their backs, they are suddenly shot from behind, whereupon Abu Akleh falls lifeless to the ground. Hanaysha tells CNN that she is sure that it was the Israeli military that fired, and that the two journalists were targets even though they were unarmed and in their work role.

- They wanted to kill us, so they shot. I see no other reason when they know we are journalists, she says and continues:

- When I try to touch her [Shireen Abu Akleh], they keep shooting at and around me.


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