Clashes Erupt at The Al Jazeera Reporter’s Funeral in Jerusalem

Violence broke out at the funeral of reporter Shireen Abu Aqla in East Jerusalem who was killed in an Israeli military operation at West Bank

Jerusalem: Violence broke out at the funeral in East Jerusalem of reporter Shireen Abu Aqla, who was killed during an Israeli military operation in the occupied West Bank.

Shireen Abu Aqla was well-known for her coverage of the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Abu Aqla, of Al Jazeera news, was shot dead on Wednesday while reporting on an Israeli military operation.

Her killing has sparked widespread condemnation, with Palestinians and Israel trading blame. Al Jazeera and the Palestinian Authority claimed Abu Aqla was shot dead by Israeli forces.

The Palestinians have refused Israel’s request for a joint probe, saying they did not trust the Israelis. Both sides are carrying out their investigations.

IN JERUSALEM, the BBC’s Tom Bateman called for growing pressure for a quick and transparent inquiry into Abu Aqla’s death.

He says an emphasis appears on the bullet that killed her, recovered during the post-mortem. However, reportedly a type used by both Israeli soldiers and Palestinian shooters.

The Israeli military released provisional findings on Thursday, which said it was impossible to determine the fatal shot source.

The report said “it could be from Palestinian gunmen” or possibly bullets fired by an Israeli soldier.

Violence erupted as Abu Aqla’s coffin was carried aloft from the hospital, causing it almost to topple. 

Live footage showed a standoff between police and Palestinians before officers pushed the crowd back, with some using batons. 

The funeral procession became calm afterward.

Abu Aqla, a 51-year-old Palestinian American, was Al Jazeera’s veteran correspondent for its Arabic news channel. She had reported on the Israel-Palestinian conflict for two decades.

Abu Aqla was given the rarity of a funeral at the compound of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday. Aqla’s coffin was draped in the Palestinian flag.

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President Abbas described her as a “martyr of the free world.” She “sacrificed her life” defending the Palestinian cause.”

He said, “We hold the Israeli occupation authorities totally responsible for her killing, and they cannot conceal the truth of this crime,” 

President Mahmoud said he would refer the case to the International Criminal Court, which investigates potential war crimes.

Shireen Abu Aqla was wearing her blue flak jacket with “Press” clearly marked on its front. The Israeli military says its operation was to apprehend “terrorist suspects.”

Ali Samoudi, another Palestinian journalist and Al Jazeera producer, was also shot and wounded during the violence.

On Wednesday, Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt Gen Aviv Kochavi said Abu Aqla was killed “in a battle zone,” adding that the Israeli military regretted her death.

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