Shireen Abu Akleh: Al Jazeera journalist shot dead in West Bank | Israeli-Palestinian conflict News

According to the Palestinian health ministry, Israeli forces shot and killed Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in the occupied West Bank.

She was hit by a sharp bullet Wednesday while reporting Israeli raids on the city of Jenin and was taken to hospital in critical condition, according to the Al Jazeera ministry and journalists. Abu Akleh was wearing a press vest when she was killed.

She was pronounced dead in hospital, the ministry said.

The circumstances of her death were not clear, but videos of the incident show Abu Akleh being shot in the head, Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim said.

“What we now know is that the Palestinian Ministry of Health has announced her death. Shireen Abu Akleh was reporting on events in Jenin, in particular an Israeli attack on the city, which lies north of the occupied West Bank, when she was hit by a bullet in the head,” Ibrahim said, speaking from the Palestinian city. Ramallah. †

“You can imagine that this is a shock to the journalists who have worked with her.”

Through tears, Ibrahim said Abu Akleh was a “highly respected journalist” who has worked with Al Jazeera since the beginning of the second Palestinian Intifada in 2000.

Another Palestinian journalist was also shot by a sharp bullet in the back, the health ministry said. Ali Samoudi, who works for the Jerusalem-based Quds newspaper, is said to be in stable condition.

The head of Al Jazeera’s office in Ramallah, Walid al-Omary, said there had been no shooting by Palestinian gunmen, challenging an Israeli statement referring to the possibility.

The Israeli army said it was attacked with heavy gunfire and explosives while operating in Jenin, and that they returned fire. It added that it is “investigating the event”.

Fatah, the party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, condemned the assassination of Abu Akleh.

“Targeting Shireen is a clear target of truth, and [Israel] wants to hide his crimes against the Palestinian people,” said Fatah spokesman Osama al-Qawasami. “Israel wants to send a message to journalists around the world that the fate of those who want to hide the truth will be shot.”

Yair Lapid, Israel’s foreign minister, said Tel Aviv is offering a “joint pathological investigation” into the “sad death” of Abu Akleh. He added that “journalists should be protected in conflict zones”.

Al Jazeera’s offices in the Gaza Strip, which also house the Associated Press, were bombed a year ago by Israeli forces during an offensive, and Palestinian and international journalists say they are regularly targeted by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank and in East Jerusalem.

Many in Palestine and abroad took to social media to express their shock and sadness.

“Israeli occupation forces killed our beloved journalist Shireen Abu Akleh as they covered their brutality in Jenin this morning. Shireen was the most prominent Palestinian journalist and a close friend,” wrote Husam Zomlot, the Palestinian ambassador to the United Kingdom.

Those who knew her described her as courageous, kind and a voice of the Palestinians.

“Shireen was a courageous, kind and honest journalist that I and millions of Palestinians grew up watching,” wrote Fadi Quran, an activist with the campaign group Avaaz.

“Shocked to learn of Israel’s murder of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in Jenin! Shireen has bravely dealt with Israel’s aggression in Palestine for more than two decades,” wrote Huwaida Arraf, a Palestinian-American activist and lawyer.

“In disbelief,” wrote Salem Barahmeh, a Palestinian activist. “We grew up with her reporting on the second intifada. She was our voice. Rest in strength and peace. Another day, another tragedy.”

Giles Trendle, general manager of Al Jazeera, said the network was “shocked and saddened” by the death of Shireen Abu Akleh.

“We have a history all over the world, but especially in this region, where we have experienced tragedies,” he said, calling for a transparent investigation into the Abu Akleh murder.

“As journalists, we continue. Our mission is to keep going. We will not be silenced despite efforts to silence us,” Trendle said. “Our mission is always to inform the world about what is happening. And that is more important ever.”

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