Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by Israeli forces on 11 May in Jenin, in the occupied West Bank.
The 51-year-old Palestinian-American Al Jazeera Arabic reporter was wearing a protective vest marked “PRESS” and stood with other reporters when he was shot.
Another Palestinian journalist, Ali al-Samoudi, was shot in the back and is in stable condition.
Abu Akleh’s death is the latest in a long string of journalists killed by the Israeli military, which has long targeted journalists and other members of the media.
According to the Palestinian Ministry of Information, at least 45 journalists have been killed by Israeli forces since 2000.
The Palestinian Journalists Union raised the death toll to 55.
Below is a brief summary of the victims of the Palestinian conflict.
Last year, in Israel’s most recent attack on Gaza in May 2021, an Israeli airstrike killed Yusuf Abu Hussein, a broadcaster for the local Voice of Al-Aqsa radio station. The airstrikes targeted his home in the besieged Gaza Strip, family and colleagues said.
At least 260 Palestinians were killed in the 11-day bombing from 10 May to 21 May.
In the middle of the ongoing attack, on 15 May, the buildings of the offices of Al Jazeera and other media organizations were destroyed in an Israeli attack.
Al Jazeera condemned the attack on its office and called on “all media and human rights bodies” to condemn the bombing and “hold the Israeli government accountable”.
However, the killing of journalists by the Israeli army continued.
⭕Israeli airstrikes in Gaza City live broadcast of Al Jazeera and AP offices ⬇️
🔴 Live update: https://t.co/RvtP1lEX1x pic.twitter.com/RBO1ZiDAl0
– Al Jazeera English (JAJEnglish) May 15, 2021
2018: Two journalists killed in one week
In April 2018, two Palestinian journalists were shot dead by Israeli forces within a week.
Ahmad Abu Hussein was killed by Israeli forces while reporting on mass demonstrations on the Gaza border. The 24-year-old died from his injuries after being shot in the abdomen during a protest near Jabaliya on April 13. According to witnesses, Hussein, a photographer for Gaza’s Voice of the People radio station, was wearing a protective vest marked “PRESS” when he was shot.
A few days ago, Yaser Murtaja, a photographer for the Gaza-based Ain Media agency, died on 7 April from a gunshot wound caused by the Israeli army the day before. Murtaja, 30, was also wearing a blue bulletproof jacket marked “PRESS” while covering protests in Khuza’a, in the southern Gaza Strip, when he was shot in the stomach.
2014: Deadliest year for Palestinian journalists
From 8 July to 26 August 2014, Israel carried out its deadliest attack on Gaza. The attack killed at least 2,100 people and injured more than 11,000 in Gaza.
That year was also the deadliest year for Palestinian journalists.
At least 17 journalists were killed in 2014, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Information.
Victims included: Abdullah Fadel Murtaja, Ali Shehta Abu Afash, Hamada Khaled Muqat, Simone Camelli, Shadi Hamdi Ayad, Abdullah Nasr Khalil Fajjan, Muhammad Majed Daher, Muhammad Nour al-Din Mustafa al-Diri, Rami Fathi Hussein Rayan, Muhammad Sameh al-Arian, Ahed Afif Zaqout, Izzat Salama Dahir, Bahaa al-Din al-Gharib, Abd al-Rahman Ziyad Abu Hein, Khaled Riad Muhammad Hamad, Naglaa Mahmoud al-Hajj, Hamed Abdullah Shehab.
2000-2012: At least 25 journalists killed
From the second intifada in 2000 to 2012, at least 25 other journalists were killed by Israeli forces.
Victims included: Muhammad Musa Abu Eisha (2012), Mahmoud Ali Ahmad al-Koumi (2012), Hussam Muhammad Salama (2012), Cevdet Kiliclar (2010), Alaa Hammad Mahmoud Murtaja (2009), Ihab Jamal (2009), Hassan Al-Wahidi (2009), Basil Ibrahim Faraj (2009), Omar Abdel-Hafiz Al-Silawi (2009), Fadel Sobhi Shana’a (2008), Hassan Ziyad Shaqoura (2008), Muhammad Adel Abu Halima (2004), Khalil Muhammad Khalil Al-Zaben (2004), James Henry Dominic Miller (2003), Nazih Adel Darwaza (2003), Fadi Nashaat Alawneh (2003), Issam Mithqal Hamza Al-Talawi (2002), Imad Sobhi Abu Zahra (2002), Amjad Bahjat Al-Alami (2002), Jamil Abd Allah Nawara (2002), Ahmed Noaman (2002), Raffaele Chirilo (2002), Muhammad Abdul-Karim Al-Bishawi (2001), Othman Abdul-Qader Al-Qatani (2001), Aziz Youssef Al-Tanh (2000).
Israel’s lack of accountability
The killing of Abu Akleh once again highlights Israel’s lack of accountability for deadly attacks on journalists and media workers.
Israel has offered to launch a joint investigation with the Palestinian Authority into the killing of Abu Akl, but the Palestinian Authority has rejected the offer.
Israel’s record in conducting such investigations has been described as a “mechanism” for whitewashing.
Omar Shakir, director of the Israeli and Palestinian Human Rights Watch, told Al Jazeera on Wednesday that Israel cannot be trusted to hold those responsible to account.
“The reality is that there is no accountability for these abuses when it comes to the actions of the Israeli authorities,” Shakir said.
The European Union, the United States and the United Nations, as well as other governments and international organizations, are now calling for a full, independent and impartial investigation into the killing of Abu Akleh, the latest journalist to be killed covering Palestine.