New evidence suggests Shireen Abu Akleh was killed in targeted attack by Israeli forces - CNN
’They were shooting directly at the journalists’: New evidence suggests Shireen Abu Akleh was killed in targeted attack by Israeli forces
By Zeena Saifi, Eliza Mackintosh, Celine Alkhaldi, Kareem Khadder, Katie Polglase and Gianluca Mezzofiore, CNN
Video by Livvy Doherty and Oscar Featherstone, CNN
Updated 1804 GMT (0204 HKT) May 24, 2022
(CNN)Several shots ring out in quick succession, cutting through a clear, blue spring morning in Jenin, in the West Bank. Crack, crack, crack, crack, crack, crack, crack.
The cameraman filming the scene scrambles backwards to take cover behind a low concrete wall. Then a man cries out in Arabic: “Injured! Shireen, Shireen, oh man, Shireen! Ambulance!”
When the camera operator pans around the corner, Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh can be seen lying motionless, face down on the ground as another Palestinian reporter, Shatha Hanaysha, crouches down beside her, using a tree trunk for cover. Hanaysha reaches out and tries to rouse her as gunshots continue. There’s no response. Both women are wearing helmets and blue protective vests marked “Press.”
In the moments that follow, a man in a white T-shirt makes several attempts to move Abu Akleh, but is forced back repeatedly by gunfire. Finally, after a few long minutes, he manages to drag her body from the street.
The shaky video, filmed by Al Jazeera cameraman Majdi Banura, captures the scene when Abu Akleh, a 51-year-old Palestinian-American was killed by a bullet to the head at around 6:30 a.m. on May 11. She had been standing with a group of journalists near the entrance of Jenin refugee camp, where they had come to cover an Israeli raid. While the footage does not show Abu Akleh being shot, eyewitnesses told CNN that they believe Israeli forces on the same street fired deliberately on the reporters in a targeted attack. All of the journalists were wearing protective blue vests that identified them as members of the news media.
“We stood in front of the Israeli military vehicles for about five to ten minutes before we made moves to ensure they saw us. And this is a habit of ours as journalists, we move as a group and we stand in front of them so they know we are journalists, and then we start moving,” Hanaysha told CNN, describing their cautious approach toward the Israeli army convoy, before the gunfire began. (...)