Palestine, Al-Jazeera journalist killed

Turkey calls for an investigation to clarify the murder of Shireen Abu Akleh

The well-known Palestinian journalist, who was covering an Israeli army raid in the occupied West Bank, died of a gunshot to the head.

Turkey has called for a proper, transparent and speedy investigation to clarify the circumstances of the killing of Palestinian Al-Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Akleh during an Israeli army raid in the occupied West Bank.

“I am deeply saddened by the news of the murder of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, and offer my condolences to her family and colleagues,” Fahrettin Altun, head of communications for the Turkish presidency, wrote on Twitter. “It is unacceptable that journalists, who serve public opinion and truth, are targeted, whatever the circumstances,” he stressed.

Akleh, 51 years old and born in Jerusalem, had become during her more than two decades of work an icon of the Palestinian media and a reference regarding the coverage of life in the territories under the occupation by Israeli forces, especially covering events such as the Second Intifada, between 2000 and 2005. Her body was buried today in a mass funeral with honours attended by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Shireen Abu Akleh had been working for Al-Jazeera’s Arabic-language channel since 1997; it was precisely when she was covering for this TV channel a raid by the Israeli army in the occupied city of Jenin, in the West Bank, when she died after being shot in the head by Israeli soldiers, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health; accusations that, however, the Tel-Aviv government denies. In any case, her tragic death is evidence once again of the high price paid by Palestinians under Israeli occupation.