Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

UN condemns killing of Palestinian-American journalist

The UN Security Council has strongly condemned the killing of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh (Mahmoud Illean/AP)
The UN Security Council has strongly condemned the killing of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh (Mahmoud Illean/AP)

The UN Security Council has strongly condemned the killing of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

On Friday night the organisation called for “an immediate, thorough, transparent, and fair and impartial investigation” into her death.

A press statement was approved by the 15 council members after language was removed emphasising the importance of media freedom and the need for journalists working in dangerous areas to be protected at the insistence of China and Russia, diplomats said, speaking on condition of anonymity because discussions were private.

The council statement reiterated “that journalists should be protected as civilians” and also condemned the injury to Ms Abu Akleh’s colleague.

Ms Abu Akleh, 51, was a household name across the Arab world, revered for her coverage of Palestinian life under Israeli rule for the Al Jazeera satellite channel for the last 25 years.

She was shot dead on Wednesday during an Israeli military raid in the West Bank town of Jenin.

Journalists who were with her, including an Al Jazeera colleague who was shot and wounded, said Israeli forces fired upon them even though they were clearly identifiable as reporters.

Mourners hold a banner depicting slain Al Jazeera veteran journalist Shireen Abu Akleh as they walk from the Old City of Jerusalem to her burial site
Ms Abu Akleh, 51, was a household name across the Arab world (Ariel Schalit/AP)

Anger at Ms Abu Akleh’s killing escalated on Friday when Israeli riot police pushed and beat pallbearers, causing them to briefly drop her casket in a shocking start to her funeral procession. It turned into perhaps the largest display of Palestinian nationalism in Jerusalem in a generation.

Israel says it is investigating the incident. It initially suggested she might have been shot by Palestinian militants, without providing evidence, but has since backtracked.

Israel called for a joint investigation with the Palestinian Authority, which administers parts of the West Bank and cooperates with it on security.

But the Palestinians rejected a joint investigation and demanded an independent international investigation.

Israeli police detain a man during the funeral
Anger at Ms Abu Akleh’s killing escalated on Friday when Israeli riot police pushed and beat pallbearers (Mahmoud Illean/AP)

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas blamed Israel for her killing and said he would immediately ask the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate. The ICC launched an investigation into possible Israeli war crimes over a year ago, a probe Israel has rejected as biased.

The Security Council did not use the word international, calling for an impartial investigation and stressing the need to ensure accountability.

Negotiations on the council statement were led by Norway, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

Norway’s UN Ambassador Mona Juul commended the “good collaboration,” calling the protection of journalists a priority for her country.

“We are particularly concerned about the rising trend in attacks on media works, and on women journalists in particular,” Ms Juul said in a statement.

Mourners carry slain Al Jazeera veteran journalist Shireen Abu Akleh during her funeral procession in the Old City of Jerusalem
Mourners carried slain Al Jazeera veteran journalist Shireen Abu Akleh through Jerusalem’s old city during her funeral procession (Mahmoud Illean/AP)

Both sides are likely to cast doubt on any conclusions reached by the other, and there did not appear to be any possibility of a third party carrying out an independent probe.

Within hours of her death, the Palestinian Authority and Al Jazeera accused Israel of deliberately killing Ms Abu Akleh.

Israel says a full investigation is needed before any conclusions can be drawn.

The 51-year-old joined Al Jazeera’s Arabic-language service in 1997 and rose to prominence covering the second Palestinian intifada, or uprising against Israeli rule, in the early 2000s.