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Violence clouds Jerusalem funeral of Al Jazeera journalist

Published : Saturday, 14 May, 2022 at 9:42 AM  Count : 321

Violence clouds Jerusalem funeral of Al Jazeera journalist

Violence clouds Jerusalem funeral of Al Jazeera journalist


Thousands of people packed Jerusalem's Old City on Friday for the burial of veteran Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh, after Israeli police stormed the funeral procession.

Television footage showed pallbearers struggling to stop Abu Akleh's coffin from falling to the ground as baton-wielding police officers charged towards them, grabbing Palestinian flags from mourners.

Washington said it was "deeply troubled" by the scenes, while the European Union said it was "appalled" by the "unnecessary force."

According to the Jerusalem Red Crescent, 33 people were injured during the procession, of whom six were hospitalised.

Israeli police said they made six arrests. A government official said mourners had thrown "rocks and glass bottles".

In a fresh shootout in the occupied West Bank, an Israeli commando was killed near the flashpoint city of Jenin. The Islamic Jihad group said its fighters were responsible.

Abu Akleh's death during an Israeli raid in Jenin on Wednesday has Israel and Palestine exchanging blame.

The Israeli army said an interim investigation could not determine who fired the fatal bullet, noting that stray Palestinian gunfire or Israeli sniper fire aimed at militants were both possible causes.

Al Jazeera has said Israel killed her "deliberately" and "in cold blood".

In a rare, unanimous statement, the UN Security Council on Friday condemned the killing and called for "an immediate, thorough, transparent, and impartial investigation," according to diplomats, who noted negotiations over the wording were particularly contentious.

Abu Akleh, a Christian and a Palestinian American, was a star reporter and her funeral drew massive crowds.

As her body left St Joseph's hospital in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, Israeli police stormed mourners who had hoisted Palestinian flags.
 
The Jewish state forbids public displays of Palestinian flags and routinely intervenes against those who parade them at demonstrations or other gatherings, reports AFP.

ASH



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