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Palestinians reject probe with Israel of reporter’s killing

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Palestinian Authority on Thursday rejected an Israeli request to carry a joint investigation into the killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, saying it will not hand over the bullet that killed her for ballistic evaluation.

Hussein Al Sheikh, a senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, mentioned that the Palestinians would conduct their very own unbiased probe and that every one events would be told of “the results of the investigation with high transparency.”

Abu Akleh, a veteran Al Jazeera journalist, was shot and killed on Wednesday whereas masking an Israeli army raid within the occupied West Bank. The broadcaster and two reporters who had been along with her blamed Israeli forces.

Israeli officers initially advised that Abu Akleh could have been killed by militant hearth, however walked that again considerably later within the day, saying there have been no “final conclusions.”

Her loss of life was met by an outpouring of grief throughout the West Bank. Her physique was to be taken to the headquarters of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah on Thursday earlier than being dropped at Jerusalem for burial on Friday.

The killing sparked condemnations from across the globe. U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has known as for “an independent and transparent investigation” to make sure these accountable are held to account.

Israel’s protection minister, Benny Gantz, on Wednesday promised such an inquiry, saying he was in contact with U.S. and Palestinian officers and hoped for cooperation between Israel and the Palestinians.

“We are trying to figure out exactly what happened,” he mentioned. “I don’t have final conclusions.”

Abu Akleh’s loss of life may draw new scrutiny of Israel’s army justice system, which is being examined as a part of a battle crimes probe carried out by the International Criminal Court. It additionally threatened to additional pressure usually rocky relations between the military and the worldwide media.

Abu Akleh, 51, was a revered and acquainted face within the Middle East, identified for her protection on Al Jazeera Arabic of the tough realities of Israel’s open-ended army occupation of the Palestinians, now in its fifty fifth 12 months. She was well known within the West Bank and was additionally a U.S. citizen.

Her loss of life comes amid a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence that has been fueled by tensions at a key Jerusalem holy website. At least 18 Israelis have been killed in Palestinian assaults in latest weeks, whereas greater than 30 Palestinians, most of them concerned in assaults or clashes with Israeli forces, have been killed. A couple of others have appeared to have been unarmed or passersby, sparking criticism that Israel has used extreme drive in its crackdown on militants.

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