Killing of Al Jazeera journalist: Palestinians not joining probe with Israel
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Killing of Al Jazeera journalist: Palestinians not joining probe with Israel

The Palestinian Authority has turned down an Israeli request to conduct a joint probe into the death of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

Jerusalem (Israel) – The Palestinian authority rejected Israeli proposal to join them with the investigation on the killing of Al Jazeera journalist  Shireen Abu Akleh

Hussein Al Sheikh, a top advisor to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, stated that the Palestinians will undertake their own independent investigation. And the results of the investigation would be communicated with high openness” to all parties.

On Wednesday, Abu Akleh, a seasoned Al Jazeera journalist, was shot and murdered while reporting on an Israeli military incursion in the occupied West Bank. The broadcaster, along with two reporters, blamed Israeli soldiers.

Israeli officials initially stated that Abu Akleh was killed by insurgent fire, but later backtracked, claiming there were no “final determinations.”

Her death sparked an outpouring of mourning throughout the West Bank. Her body was to be conveyed to the Palestinian Authority headquarters in Ramallah on Thursday before being transported to Jerusalem for burial on Friday.

The killing drew condemnation from all throughout the world. The United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Gutteres, has called for a “independent and transparent investigation” to ensure those responsible are held accountable.

Benny Gantz, Israel’s defence minister, pledged such an investigation on Wednesday, saying he was in contact with US and Palestinian authorities and hoped for collaboration between Israel and the Palestinians.

“We are trying to figure out exactly what happened,” he said. “I don’t have final conclusions.”

Abu Akleh’s death could draw new scrutiny of Israel’s military justice system, which is being examined as part of a war crimes probe conducted by the International Criminal Court. It also threatened to further strain often rocky relations between the army and the international media.

Abu Akleh, 51, was a respected and familiar face in the Middle East, known for her coverage on Al Jazeera Arabic of the harsh realities of Israel’s open-ended military occupation of the Palestinians, now in its 55th year. She was widely recognized in the West Bank and was also a U.S. citizen.

Her death comes amid a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence that has been fueled by tensions at a key Jerusalem holy site.

At least 18 Israelis have been killed in Palestinian attacks in recent weeks, while more than 30 Palestinians, most of them involved in attacks or clashes with Israeli forces, have been killed. A few others have appeared to have been unarmed or passersby, sparking criticism that Israel has used excessive force in its crackdown on militants.

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