Sep 26, 2022
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Palestinian-American Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was fatally shot on Wednesday while covering an IDF raid into Jenin which encountered heavily armed Palestinian terrorists. Though the circumstances and precise cause of her death are still undetermined, many media and even US politicians have blamed Israel.

“It cannot be determined whether [Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh] was killed by Israeli fire or by a Palestinian bullet,” Palestinian Forensic Medicine Institute Director Dr. Rayyan al Ali said during an appearance on Channel 12 on Wednesday. Ali emphasized that the findings were only preliminary and that it could not be definitively determined from how far away the bullet was shot, but that it was not from close range. A Palestinian pathologist was quoted in the media as saying that she had suffered a cerebral laceration and skull fractures. The Palestinian Authority on Thursday declined a request to let the bullet be assessed in an Israeli laboratory under international supervision. The IDF has records of all the soldiers involved in the operation and the weapons they carried so inspection of the bullet may be able to eliminate the possibility that it was fired by the IDF.

An initial, internal IDF probe reportedly found that though she was likely standing near armed terrorists, Israeli troops did not fire at her.

“Palestinians fired extensively at our forces, firing wildly and indiscriminately in every direction,” IDF Chief of Staff, Major General Aviv Kochavi told the press. “Unlike the Palestinians, IDF soldiers carry out professional and selective firing … at this stage it is not possible to determine from which shot she was hit.”

“According to the information we’ve gathered, it appears likely that armed Palestinians — who were indiscriminately firing at the time — were responsible for the unfortunate death of the journalist,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said in a statement Wednesday. Israeli officials, including the IDF and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, released a video showing a man firing down an alley and people running in the Jenin Refugee Camp, shouting about a soldier being hit.

Video analysis of the footage by Jewish Press revealed another Palestinian terrorist in this video firing from a rooftop.

Yet another video showed a number of terrorists armed with M-16s.

​Video from directly after Abu Akleh’s shooting shows she was wearing a helmet and a bulletproof vest with “press” written on it when she was shot.

“No IDF soldier was injured, which increases the possibility that Palestinian terrorists were the ones who shot the journalist,” Bennett said.

The PA has also refused to take part in a joint investigation with Israel and the US. Channel 12 reported that the bullet in question is a 5.56×45mm NATO round, which is used by both Israeli troops and Palestinian terrorists for weapons, including M16 and M4 assault rifles.

Several sources have analyzed the videos, including The Israel Advocacy  Movement.

Israel War Room also made a  video analysis.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas again charged Thursday that Israel was responsible for the death and vowed to take the case to the International Criminal Court Hague.

This claim was picked up by Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MICH):

Israeli ambassador to the US Michael Herzog accused Palestinian-American congresswoman Rashida Tlaib on Thursday of “rushing to a biased conclusion” after she said Israel “murdered” Al Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Akleh.

Tlaib was echoed by Rep. Ilhan Omar and Rep. Ayanna Pressley:

Abu Akleh was buried on Friday without any independent forensic investigation. The ceremony was accompanied by wild gunfire.

Born in Jerusalem, Abu Akleh, a Catholic Arab, spent time in the United States as a child and held US citizenship along with her Jerusalem residency card.