Palestine: International Community Must End Impunity and Hold Israel Accountable for Killing of Palestinian Journalist

In Arab Countries, International Advocacy Program by CIHRS

The Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies condemns in the strongest terms the killing of renowned Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh by Israeli occupying forces (IOF) on the morning of 11 May 2022. It is imperative that the international community finally take action to bring an end to Israeli impunity and hold authorities accountable for the systematic attacks and killings of Palestinian journalists. We also call for the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh and other Palestinian journalists by the IOF, which amount to war crimes.

Shireen was shot in the face by a single bullet while wearing a press vest and helmet.  She was  covering the raid by the IOF on Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank for Al Jazeera. Another Palestinian journalist, Ali al-Samoudi, was also wounded but is reportedly in stable condition. In recent weeks, the IOF have carried out a widespread campaign of raids in cities across the West Bank and arrested dozens of Palestinians.

The killing of Shireen Abu Akleh is the latest example of the systematic targeting, attacks, and killings of Palestinian journalists by Israeli authorities. This latest crime comes in the context of Israel’s apartheid regime, which continues to silence voices reporting on its war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against the Palestinian people. Since 2000, Israeli forces have killed at least 47 Palestinian journalists and at least 144 have been wounded since 2018.  No perpetrators have been held to account.

During Israeli escalations in April and May 2021, Israeli authorities conducted an unprecedented crackdown on Palestinian journalists on both sides of the Green Line, including the use of live ammunition, physical assaults, intimidation, and  disruption while shooting footage. In May 2021, Israel bombed the al-Shorouk Tower in the Gaza Strip that contained the offices of the Associated Press and Al Jazeera. Throughout the Great March of Return in Gaza, two Palestinian journalists were killed by the IOF and an additional 173 sustained injuries according to documentation by the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights.

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