PA’s Abbas vows to take Israel to ICC over journalist’s death

The Palestinian Authority already rejected Israel’s proposal for a joint investigation into death of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

By David Hellerman, World Israel News

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas vowed to hold Israel accountable at the International Criminal Court for the death of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

The Al Jazeera reporter was hit in the head by a bullet while a covering a shootout in Jenin between the IDF and Palestinian terrorists. A second Palestinian journalist, Ali Samoudi of the Jerusalem-based Al-Quds daily, was injured.

“[Israel] committed the crime and we do not trust them,” Abbas said at a memorial ceremony at his presidential compound in Ramallah, attended by thousands.

The PA will “turn immediately to the International Criminal Court,” Abbas said, adding, “Israel bears full responsibility for this crime, and this crime cannot go unpunished.”

Israel says Abu Akleh was likely killed by Palestinian gunfire.

The PA rejected Israel’s proposal for a joint investigation. Ramallah has also refused to hand over the bullet that killed Abu Akleh to Israeli forensic investigators.

According to Hebrew media reports, the bullet is a 5.56 mm one, used by both the IDF and Palestinian gunmen.

The ICC is already looking into Palestinian allegations of Israeli war crimes.

Israel rejects the ICC’s probe, arguing that the IDF and the Israeli legal system provides sufficient legal oversight.

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Israel also argues that the Palestinians don’t have statehood and therefore have no standing to appeal to the ICC. Critics of the ICC also argue that the court is politically biased against the Jewish state.

Abu Akleh will be buried in Jerusalem on Friday.