PA rejects Israeli proposal for joint probe into journalist's death in West Bank

i24NEWS - AFP

3 min read
A Palestinian woman holds a photograph of late Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Aqleh,  in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on May 11, 2022.
RONALDO SCHEMIDT / AFPA Palestinian woman holds a photograph of late Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Aqleh, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on May 11, 2022.

'We're encouraging both sides to participate in that investigation so we can get down to why this happened'

The Palestinian Civilian Affairs Minister Hussein Al Sheikh confirmed on Thursday that the West Bank's Palestinian Authority (PA) rejected an Israeli proposal for a joint investigation into the death of journalist Shireen Abu Aqleh. 

Al Sheikh noted on Twitter that the PA would conduct its own probe, and inform the United States and Qatar of their findings.

The US on Wednesday denounced the killing of Palestinian-American Al Jazeera journalist Abu Aqleh as she covered an Israeli army raid, and called for a thorough investigation.

State Department spokesman Ned Price said the US was "absolutely heartbroken" to learn of her death and the injuries to her producer in the West Bank.

"We send our deepest condolences to Shireen's family, friends, and loved ones and strongly condemn her killing, as we do the killing of journalists around the world," he said.

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The US ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, called for the killing to be "investigated transparently."

"We're encouraging both sides to participate in that investigation so that we can get down to why this happened.”

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The Qatar-based Al Jazeera television channel charged that Israeli forces deliberately and "in cold blood" shot veteran reporter Abu Aqleh in the head during the unrest in the West Bank’s Jenin refugee camp.

But Israel's Prime Minister Naftali Bennett suggested "armed Palestinians" were "likely" responsible, although Defense Minister Benny Gantz appeared to distance himself from the remarks and said he "cannot exclude any option."

An initial probe of the incident by Israel’s army concluded that it was still unclear whether Abu Aqleh was shot by Israeli or Palestinian fire.

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