The UN Security Council on Friday night strongly condemned the murder of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Aqleh and called for “an immediate, thorough, transparent, and impartial investigation”, AP reported.
The Council statement reiterated that "journalists must be protected as civilians," and also condemned the wounding of Abu Aqleh's colleague.
Abu Aqleh, 51, was known throughout the Arab world, revered for her coverage of Palestinian life under Israeli rule on the Al-Jazeera satellite channel for the past 25 years.
She was shot and killed Wednesday during an Israeli military raid in the West Bank city of Jenin. Journalists who were with her, including a colleague from Al-Jazeera who was wounded, said that Israeli troops opened fire on them despite the fact that they were known as reporters.
Anger over Abu Aqleh's murder escalated on Friday when Israeli police pushed and beat porters, causing them to briefly drop the coffin, a shocking start to the funeral procession. This turned into perhaps the largest display of Palestinian nationalism in Jerusalem in a generation, the AP notes.
Israel said it is investigating the incident. Initially it suggested that Palestinian militants might have shot the journalist, without providing evidence, but then it backtracked. Israel has called for a joint investigation with the Palestinian Authority, which governs part of the West Bank and cooperates with it on security.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas accused Israel of killing Abu Aqleh and said he would immediately ask the International Criminal Court to investigate.