Israeli police to investigate conduct at journalist funeral

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli police selected Saturday to analyze the conduct of their officers who attacked the funeral of a slain Al Jazeera journalist, inflicting mourners to briefly drop the casket throughout the ceremony in Jerusalem.

Police forces beat pallbearers with batons initially of the funeral procession on Friday of Shireen Abu Akleh, who witnesses say was killed by Israeli troops Wednesday throughout a raid within the occupied West Bank.

The stunning scenes on the funeral, and the dying of the 51-year-old Palestinian-American journalist, drew worldwide condemnation and requires investigations, together with from the United States and the United Nations.

In an announcement Saturday, the Israeli police mentioned their commissioner has instructed an investigation that may be concluded within the coming days. “The Israel Police supports its police officers, but as a professional organization that seeks to learn and improve, it will also draw lessons from the incident,” the assertion mentioned.

The police say they used power as lots of of “rioters tried to sabotage the ceremony and harm the police.”

The assault on the funeral added to a way of grief and outrage that has adopted the dying of Abu Akleh, a veteran journalist and a family identify throughout the Arab world. They additionally illustrated the deep sensitivities over east Jerusalem – which is claimed by each Israel and the Palestinians and has sparked repeated rounds of violence.

Ahead of the burial, a big crowd gathered to escort her casket from an east Jerusalem hospital to a Catholic church within the close by Old City. Many of the mourners held Palestinian flags, and the group started shouting: “We sacrifice our soul and blood for you, Shireen.”

Shortly after, Israel police moved in, pushing and clubbing mourners. As helmeted riot police approached, they hit pallbearers, inflicting one man to lose management of the casket because it dropped towards the bottom. Police ripped Palestinian flags out of individuals’s fingers and fired stun grenades to disperse the group.

On Friday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned the U.S. administration was “troubled by the images of Israeli police intruding into the funeral procession” of Abu Akleh, who was additionally an American citizen. “Every family deserves to lay their loved ones to rest in a dignified and unimpeded manner,” he tweeted.

A unanimous condemnation got here Friday from the U.N. Security Council, which referred to as in a uncommon assertion for “an immediate, thorough, transparent and impartial investigation into her killing.”

Late Friday, the Palestinian public prosecutor mentioned preliminary findings present Abu Akleh was killed by deliberate hearth from Israeli troops. The prosecutor mentioned the investigation would proceed. Israel’s navy mentioned earlier Friday that she was killed throughout an alternate of fireplace with Palestinian militants, and that it couldn’t decide the supply of the shot that killed her.

Israel has referred to as for a joint investigation with the Palestinian Authority, and urged it at hand over the bullet for forensic evaluation to find out who fired the deadly spherical. The PA has refused, saying it is going to conduct its personal investigation and ship the outcomes to the International Criminal Court, which is already investigating attainable Israeli warfare crimes.

The PA and Al Jazeera, which has lengthy had a strained relationship with Israel, have accused Israel of intentionally killing Abu Akleh. Israel denies the accusations.

Abu Akleh was a member of the small Palestinian Christian group within the Holy Land. Palestinian Christians and Muslims marched alongside each other Friday in a present of unity.

She was shot within the head Wednesday morning throughout an Israeli navy raid within the West Bank city of Jenin.


Associated Press author Fares Akram in Hamilton, Ontario, contributed.

Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.

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