U.S. demands accountability from Israel for murder of journalist Shirin Abu Akele

Sep. 6 () –

The United States demanded on Monday that Israel be held accountable for the murder of journalist Shirin Abu Akle, who died in May of a gunshot wound to the head in the West Bank, after the Israeli army acknowledged that there was a “strong possibility” that it had killed her “accidentally”.

This was confirmed by U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price, who has positively assessed the Hebrew State’s review of the journalist’s murder while she was covering clashes in the city Jenin.

“We welcome Israel’s review of this tragic incident and again underscore the importance of accountability in this case, including policies and procedures to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future,” Price said in a statement released by the State Department.

The spokesman recalled that the Defense Department recently stressed the need to improve its own assessments and practices to ensure mitigation of civilian harm, as well as that of U.S. military partners and allies.

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“Our thoughts remain with the Abu Akleh family as they mourn this tremendous loss, and with the many others around the world who brought Shirin and her news home for more than two decades,” Price has stressed, calling the journalist “a fearless reporter whose journalism and pursuit of truth earned her the respect of audiences around the world.”

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) determined Monday that there is a “strong possibility” that a bullet fired by one of its military personnel killed Shirin Abu Akle.

Until now, Israeli authorities had been reluctant to acknowledge any responsibility in this incident and, in fact, initially pointed as the main hypothesis that the Al-Jazeera journalist died a victim of Palestinians.

However, the internal investigation carried out by the Army has determined that, in the absence of knowing for certain who fired the shot, “there is a strong possibility that Shirin was accidentally hit by an IDF shot.”

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Following the report, the journalist’s family has accused Israel of trying to “hide the truth” and “dodge its responsibility” for what happened, as it continues to “not take responsibility for murdering Shirin.”

“Our family is not surprised by the outcome (of the investigations) as it is obvious that Israeli war criminals cannot investigate their own crimes,” he said in a statement.

Thus, they feel “hurt, frustrated and disappointed,” but they are not throwing in the towel. They are looking to the United States — the journalist was also a U.S. citizen — to carry out the investigation that the family is missing in Israel. “We will not stop until we get justice for Shirin,” he added.

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