Israeli forces shot Abu Akleh in the head on May 11, while she was standing with a group of journalists near the entrance of the Jenin refugee camp, reporting on an Israeli raid on the camp.
Her tragic death sent shock waves across the region, drawing global condemnation. The United Nations and the European Union, among others, called for a full investigation into what has been described as a deliberate murder “in cold blood.”
On May 26, Palestinian Attorney General Akram al-Khatib confirmed that Abu Akleh was killed by an Israeli soldier, confirming the findings of a preliminary investigation revealed about two weeks earlier.
While the Tel Aviv regime claims the Al Jazeera journalist was killed as she was caught in the crossfire, the attorney general said the PA investigation showed there were no Palestinian fighters near the scene of the shooting.
According to the investigation, Abu Akleh was wounded by an armor-piercing bullet shot from a semi-automatic rifle Ruger Mini-14 while wearing a helmet and a vest plainly marked with the word “PRESS,” disputing Israel’s assertion that the bullet came from Palestinians.
The Palestinian investigation echoed findings by Al Jazeera, CNN, and several other major news organizations.
The Palestinian Authority has been asked to transfer the bullet that killed Abu Akleh to Israeli officials for additional study. The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, has declined. He declared the Israeli regime to be untrustworthy.
At a ceremony marking 40 days since Abu Akleh’s assassination in the West Bank town of Ramallah on Sunday, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said the PA has called on the Tel Aviv administration to hand up the firearm.
“We have refused to hand over the bullet to them, and we even demand that they hand over the weapon that murdered Shireen Abu Akleh,” Shtayyeh said
The Israeli military maintains that it has yet to determine whether the Palestinian journalist was killed by an Israeli soldier or by errant Palestinian gunfire. Israel claims it hasn’t decided whether one of its troopers would face criminal charges in connection with the incident.
Furthermore, the Israeli military’s senior lawyer has already stated that such charges are unlikely given the circumstances surrounding Abu Akleh’s death, which occurred during active battle, according to the Israeli military’s rejected assertions.
The killing was also reported by eyewitnesses and journalists who were with Abu Akleh on the day she was shot as a “deliberate attempt” to kill journalists.
Israel’s war crimes in the occupied West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip have already been investigated by the International Criminal Court (ICC). Israel, on the other hand, does not acknowledge the court’s jurisdiction and has branded the war crimes investigation as unjust and anti-Semitic.