Al Jazeera’s journalist Shireen Abu Akleh has been shot dead by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, according to the Palestinian health ministry.
Abu Akleh was hit by a live bullet on Wednesday while covering an Israeli military operation in the city of Jenin. She was wearing a press vest when she was killed.
She was reportedly rushed to the hospital in critical condition but was declared dead at the hospital.
Another Al Jazeera journalist, Ali Samoudi is now in a stable condition after being shot in the back. Said Samoudi:
We were going to film the Israeli army operation and suddenly they shot us without asking us to leave or stop filming.
The first bullet hit me and the second bullet hit Shireen … there was no Palestinian military resistance at all at the scene.
Shatha Hanaysha, a Palestinian journalist who was present next to Abu Akleh when she was shot, said that there had been no confrontations between Palestinian fighters and the Israeli army.
Hanaysha told Al Jazeera that the group of journalists had been targeted. She said:
We were four journalists, we were all wearing vests, all wearing helmets.
The [Israeli] occupation army did not stop firing even after she collapsed.
I couldn’t even extend my arm to pull her because of the shots.
The army was adamant about shooting to kill.
Speaking from the Palestinian city of Ramallah, Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim said Abu Akleh was shot in the head. Said, Ibrahim:
What we know for now is that the Palestinian Health Ministry has announced her death.
Shireen Abu Akleh was covering the events unfolding in Jenin, specifically an Israeli raid on the city, which is north of the occupied West Bank when she was hit by a bullet to the head.
As you can imagine, this is a shock to the journalists who have been working with her.
The Israeli military claimed that it had come under attack with heavy gunfire while operating in Jenin and that they fired back.
Yair Lapid, the Israeli foreign minister, said that they were offering a “joint pathological investigation” into Abu Akleh’s “sad death”.