Family of slain journalist Shireen Abu Akleh meets Blinken to ‘demand justice’


US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with the family of slain Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh who are demanding justice for her killing at an Israeli raid in the occupied West Bank.

US State Department spokesperson Ned Price told a regular news briefing that Blinken would meet the family on Tuesday and would reiterate the need for accountability of the veteran reporter’s death.

Lina Abu Akleh, Shireen Abu Akleh’s niece, posted a video on Twitter from outside the State Department saying that she and other family members “are here to demand justice for Shireen”.

The Al Jazeera reporter was killed on 11 May during an Israeli raid in the town of Jenin in the occupied West Bank.

The State Department said this month that Abu Akleh was likely killed by gunfire from Israeli positions but that it was probably unintentional, citing an investigation by the US Security Coordinator.

Her family and Palestinian officials have criticised the US report and maintained she was deliberately targeted. Israel denies this.

“We do understand that sometimes these elements … run at cross purposes – timeliness and thoroughness – but we want to see an investigation that is both timely, but is also thorough, and that importantly concludes in accountability,” Price said when asked if there was a time frame for accountability.

The family had accused the United States of providing impunity for Israel over her killing. They unsuccessfully requested a meeting with President Joe Biden in person during his trip to Israel this month.

“We will pursue accountability for her murder wherever it may take us,” said a statement on Twitter from Lina, Shireen’s brother Tony and nephew Victor. “Shireen lived to uncover the truth behind every story, and so shall we.” (Source: CNA)