opinion | Israel leaves questions unanswered in death of American journalist

After months of investigations by international news and human rights organizations found that an Israeli soldier most likely shot the Palestinian-American journalist Shirin Abu Akleh, last spring, according to an Israeli military investigation. receipt Same result – but it also ruled out any criminal investigation or charges against its forces. This ruling leaves critical questions unanswered.

First, the IDF has provided no evidence to support its claim that Abu Uqla’s killing was an accident or, as a senior Israeli official said, Tell Journalists, “misidentification.” Second, the IDF questioned its findings by asserting that the bullet was aimed at Palestinian militants “during an exchange of fire during which widespread, indiscriminate, life-threatening shots were fired at IDF soldiers.” In fact, detailed investigations by the postAnd the New York times and others independent groups – based on video and audio accounts and eyewitnesses – indicates that there were no Palestinian gunmen in the vicinity of Abu Akleh when she was hit in the back of her neck, and no exchange of fire occurred there in the preceding minutes.

The case remains that no evidence has emerged indicating, the Palestinian Authority said, that the Israeli forces involved in the May 11 incident targeted the non-combatants or specifically Abu Aqla, a household name in the Arab world based on their two-decade reporting of the Israeli conflict. Palestinian on Al Jazeera. But the lack of such evidence does not justify the IDF’s decision to close the case. On the contrary, it draws attention to the paucity of the investigation details that are made public.

No recording or transcript of any interview with an Israeli soldier has been released, nor evidence of what any soldier saw, heard or believed when they opened fire on a group of civilians, including 51-year-old Abu Akleh, whose protective clothing has been identified. them as journalists. Nor has the IDF provided any video footage, if any, of drones or body cameras that might shed light on the incident, although Orders from The Post.

The conclusion of the IDF indicates approximately full reflection From her initial insistence that Palestinian gunmen likely killed Abu Uqla. It goes along with the like Finding It was reached two months ago by the US State Department, which, coming from the Jewish state’s most important ally, eased pressure to bring criminal charges against a soldier or soldiers in the IDF.

However, it shouldn’t have the last word on the incident, which occurred in the West Bank city of Jenin, amid a military raid weeks after Palestinian terrorist attacks. Killed 17 Israelis. A truly independent investigation is needed; Israel should invite the FBI to do so.

Counter-reporters routinely take risks in the course of their reporting. This is no excuse for shrugs his shoulders When a person dies in unjustified circumstances, as in the killing of Abu Aqla. Israeli And the international human rights groups for a long time alleged Situations in which Israeli soldiers and police avoid accountability Sins. In this regard, it is noteworthy that no Israeli official has been seriously punished due to the chaos that occurred at Abu Aqla’s funeral in Jerusalem on May 13, when the police beat the Palestinian coffin-bearers who were carrying her coffin, almost causing them to bring it down. This demise, and the questions that Israel has left unanswered about the respected journalist’s death, underscore the need for an external investigation.

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