Israel refuses to assist US over fatal shooting of Palestinian-American journalist
Wednesday 16 Nov 2022 12:01 amShare
Israel has called the US’s decision to launch an investigation into the fatal shooting of a Palestinian-American journalist a ‘grave mistake’ and refused to cooperate.
Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh was wearing a helmet and a protective vest marked with the word ‘Press’ when she was shot last May in the occupied West Bank.
Israel has acknowledged its troops probably killed her as she covered a raid they were carrying out on a refugee camp following a spate of Palestinian attacks.
But it has vigorously denied allegations from Al Jazeera and Palestinian officials that she was deliberately targeted.
Defence minister Benny Gantz slammed the US Department of Justice’s decision to investigate and vowed: ‘We will not allow interference in Israel’s internal affairs.’
It comes as US Democrats call for a tougher line on close ally Israel, which is preparing for the formation of its most right-wing government in history following this month’s election.
Ms Abu Akleh – who was a US citizen – had covered the West Bank for Al Jazeera for two decades.
She was a well-known face across the Arab world and her death caused shock across the region.
The journalist was shot at the Jenin camp, which Israel views as a hotbed of militancy.
It had been the focus of nightly arrest operations after Palestinian attacks killed 19.
More than 130 Palestinians in east Jerusalem and the West Bank have been killed so far in 2022, making it the deadliest year since 2006.