Nicola Sturgeon and Humza Yousaf condemn Israeli police violence at Abu Akleh funeral

Nicola Sturgeon and Health Minister Humza Yousaf have sharply criticized Israeli security forces beating mourners who carried Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh’s coffin through the streets of Jerusalem.

The prime minister said scenes of pallet carriers being beaten by riot police on Friday were “shameful”, while Mr Yousaf branded them “disgusting” and said anyone with “a twinge of humanity” should condemn their actions “in the strongest terms. possible turns. ”

Abu Akleh, 51, was a household name throughout the Arab world, honored for his coverage of Palestinian life under Israeli rule for the Al Jazeera satellite channel for the past 25 years.

She was shot and killed on Wednesday during an Israeli military attack in the West Bank city of Jenin.

Abu Akleh

Journalists who were with her, including an Al Jazeera colleague who was shot and wounded, said Israeli forces fired at them, even though they could be clearly identified as journalists.

READ MORE: Veteran Al Jazeera reporter killed during Israeli raid on West Bank

Anger over Abu Akleh’s killing escalated yesterday as Israeli riot police pushed and beat pallet carriers, prompting them to briefly drop her coffin in a shocking start to her funeral procession.

It became what is being called the largest display of Palestinian nationalism in Jerusalem in a generation.

Israel says they are investigating the incident. It initially suggested she could have been shot by Palestinian militants without providing evidence, but has since been withdrawn.

As footage of the funeral spread across the internet yesterday, Mr Yousaf tweeted:

“The actions of the Israeli security forces attacking mourners who are literally carrying Shireen Abu Akhleh’s coffin are sick. Anyone with a shred of decency or a hint of humanity should condemn in the strongest terms.”

Nicola Sturgeon also tweeted her support for a statement by Josep Fontelles, the UN High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, who said: “The European Union is shaken by the scenes that unfolded on Friday during the funeral procession of the American-Palestinian journalist. Akleh in Occupied East Jerusalem.

“The EU condemns the disproportionate use of force and the disrespectful behavior of the Israeli police towards the participants in the mourning procession.

“Giving the opportunity for a peaceful farewell and letting mourners mourn in peace without harassment and humiliation is the minimum human respect.

“The EU reiterates its call for a thorough and independent inquiry to clarify all the circumstances surrounding the death of Shireen Abu Akleh, which is bringing those responsible for her killings to justice.”

The UN Security Council has strongly condemned the killing of the Palestinian-American journalist and called for “an immediate, thorough, transparent and fair and impartial inquiry” into her death.

A press release was approved by the 15 councilors after the language was removed, stressing the importance of media freedom and the need for journalists working in dangerous areas to be protected at the insistence of China and Russia, said conditional diplomats of anonymity because discussions were private.

The Council’s statement reiterated “that journalists should be protected as civilians” and also condemned the harm done to Abu Akleh’s colleague.


Thousands attended the funeral procession

A few hours after her death, the Palestinian Authority and Al Jazeera accused Israel of deliberately killing 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 was given a prominent seat covering the second Palestinian intifada, or uprising against Israeli rule, in the early 2000s.

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 inquiry and demanded an independent international inquiry.

Both sides are likely to cast doubt on any conclusions reached by the other, and there did not appear to be any possibility that a third party would conduct an independent investigation.

Israeli police have defended the actions of their officers, saying they were hit by stone-throwing youths.

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