Israel won’t investigate soldiers who fired in the direction of Shireen Abu Akleh, even though new evidence undermines their account of what happened.
— #FreeAhmadManasra (@freeworldun) May 20, 2022
Israel’s military police have reportedly decided not to open any criminal investigation into the fatal shooting of the Palestinian American reporter Shireen Abu Akleh, even though newly released video appears to contradict the Israeli army’s claim that the journalist was standing close to Palestinian militants when she was shot last week in the occupied West Bank.
Amos Harel, the senior military correspondent for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, reported on Thursday that the decision not to investigate the Israeli soldiers who might have fired the fatal shot came after an internal review by the commando unit of the Israel Defense Forces “found six instances of IDF gunfire at armed Palestinians who were near Abu Akleh” as she reported on an Israeli raid on a refugee camp in Jenin.
According to Harel, the criminal investigations division of the Israeli army simply accepted the accounts of the soldiers who opened fire but “testified that they did not see the journalist at all and aimed their fire at gunmen, who were indeed nearby.”
However, within hours of Harel’s report, video posted on Twitter by Rushdi Abualouf, a Palestinian journalist for the BBC, appeared to contradict the claim that Abu Akleh was near any Palestinian gunmen engaged in a firefight with Israeli troops.
The clip shows that Abu Akleh and several other journalists, all wearing blue vests marked “Press,” were instead walking in the direction of the Israeli soldiers, as young men behind them stood around talking and joking, when shots suddenly rang out and Abu Akleh and a colleague were both hit.
As the writer and political analyst Yousef Munayyer explained on Twitter, “At the start of the video you can see the mood is relaxed, what they are saying isn’t really clear mostly because they are chuckling.”
After multiple shots are heard and the young men scatter, a voice is heard saying, “Did anyone get hit?” and calling for an ambulance.
Then, after more shots, someone shouts, “Shireen! Shireen!” and, amid frantic calls for an ambulance, the desperate warning: “Stay where you are, don’t move!”
Video posted on the day of the killing last week appeared to show that people who tried to reach the mortally wounded Abu Akleh were fired on as they approached her.
Harel also reported that there were no plans for a real criminal investigation of the Israeli soldiers because “such an investigation, which would necessitate questioning as potential criminal suspects soldiers for their actions during a military operation, would provoke opposition and controversy within the IDF and in Israeli society in general.”
Moments Of Operation Protective Edge, In Gifs
1. The time the Israeli Government arrested 500 and killed 10 Palestinians in their search for the three missing Israeli teens, forgetting to mention they knew they’d already been murrdered and not kidnapped
2. The time 16-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdeir was kidnapped, beaten, and burned alive by right-wing Israelis
3. When Hamas fired quassam rockets, EPICALLY failing to beat the Iron Dome
4. That time IDF soldiers beat and arrested Mohammed Abu Khdeir’s American cousin, and tried to force him to say Mohammed was killed by family for being gay
5. That time Israeli airstrikes deliberately targeted houses, hospitals, and TWO disabled homes
6. This cat won’t want to be on the wrong side of Hamas again, lol
7. When Israel hit the same hospital AGAIN
8. The time an Israeli warship shelled four Gazan children playing football on the beach… twice!