Shireen Abu Akleh, a Palestinian veteran Al Jazeera journalist, shot in the face by Israeli forces during a raid into Jenin refugee camp in occupied West Bank [Al Jazeera]
A female journalist for Al Jazeera media outlet was shot dead during a coverage in West Bank.
The incident which took place on Wednesday during an Israeli raid in Jenin town, was earlier blamed on Israeli forces. However, conflicting reports suggest Palestinian gunshots could be responsible. A reporter was also wounded.
Prior to her demise, Shireen Abu Akleh, worked as a correspondent for Al Jazeera network. She was a household figure in Palestine, and reported numerous developing stories for the Arabic language channel.
51-year-old Abu Akleh was born in Jerusalem and also held U.S citizenship. She was famous for her reports centered around Palestinian locations, and have worked for Al Jazeera for 25 years.
The Al Jazeera network announced the loss of their correspondent on Wednesday; calling on the international community to condemn and hold Israeli forces accountable for deliberately targeting and killing their colleague. This was also broadcasted as a flash message, after the the Qatar-based media outlet interrupted their live broadcast.
“We pledge to prosecute the perpetrators legally, no matter how hard they try to cover up their crime, and bring them to justice,” Al Jazeera stated.
Meanwhile Ali Samoudi, Abu Akleh’s on-ground partner; who was shot in the back is now in stable condition after being rushed to the hospital. Israeli forces have continued to insist there is evidence of Palestinian hit, opining they should be held accountable.
The Israeli military added that they are currently looking into the incident, stating they were under heavy gunfire and explosives in Jenin town and had to fire back at the Palestinians.
Two video footages have been released following the unfortunate incident. The first showing Palestinian gunmen retreating, while one claimed to have shot an Israeli soldier. In their defence, Israelis have claimed that none of their soldiers was shot, suggesting it was the journalists that were fired at.
The second video aired by Al Jazeera showed both journalists near a tree, with Abu Akleh’s motionless body; while her partner called for an ambulance. Gunshots were also heard in the background, as other men assisted in rushing both to the hospital.
Shireen Abu Akleh’s body will be taken to Ramallah, the seat of the Palestinian government, before she is buried in Jerusalem. She was earlier marched through Jenin, as a Palestinian flag and press vest was used to cover her remains.
Meanwhile, West Bank have been home to several Israeli raids in recent weeks, with majority being orchestrated by Palestinians from Jenin.