Israeli soldier deliberately shot Al Jazeera reporter, Palestinian official says

RAMALLAH, West Bank, May 26 (Reuters) – The Palestinian Authority stated on Thursday its investigation into the killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh showed that she was shot by an Israeli soldier in a “deliberate murder”.

Israel angrily denied the accusation and said it was continuing its very own investigations into the death of Abu Akleh, who died on May possibly 11 although she was covering an Israeli military raid in the town of Jenin in the occupied West Bank.

The Israeli military had claimed earlier that she could possibly have been shot unintentionally by 1 of its troopers or by a Palestinian militant in an exchange of hearth.

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Palestinian Lawyer General Akram Al-Khatib advised reporters that its enquiry showed there had been no militants shut to Abu Akleh when she died.

“The only resource of fire in that position arrived from the occupation forces with the intention to destroy,” Al-Khatib stated, referring to the Israel Defence Forces (IDF).

He included that Abu Akleh, who experienced been putting on a helmet and a press vest that obviously marked her as a journalist, experienced attempted to flee with some fellow reporters as the first shots rang out. “It signifies a war crime,” Al-Khatib reported.

Qatar’s Al Jazeera Television set Network mentioned it would refer the killing to the International Criminal Court docket (ICC). read much more

Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz turned down the findings.

“Any assert that the IDF deliberately harms journalists or uninvolved civilians, is a blatant lie,” he wrote on Twitter.

He reiterated his get in touch with for the Palestinians to cooperate with Israel in the investigation and hand more than the bullet for ballistic exams to see if it matched an Israeli navy gun.

The Palestinians say they do not rely on Israel and have refused to hold a joint probe.

Al-Khatib claimed assessments confirmed that the bullet that killed Abu Akleh was a 5.56 mm spherical fired from a Ruger Mini-14 semiautomatic rifle, which is utilised by the Israeli armed forces.

That identical 5.56 calibre can also be fired from M-16 rifles that are carried by several Palestinian militants. Al-Khatib did not say how he was guaranteed it had come from an Israeli rifle.

Israel has explained the only way to be certain if it was fired by just one of its troopers was to analyse the bullet and see if the markings on it matched the barrel of an Israeli gun.

“I keep on to get in touch with on the PA to hand in excess of the bullet and conclusions. We are ready and keen to carry out an investigation in collaboration with intercontinental actors,” Gantz stated on Thursday.

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Added reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi Creating by Henriette Chacar and Crispian Balmer Editing by Howard Goller

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Ann C. Toledo

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