Ahmad Abu Hussein, 24, worked for Al-Shaab, a left-wing radio station with ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. On April 13, a bullet shot by an Israeli sniper hit him in the abdomen while he covered the ‘Great March of Return’ demonstrations east of Jabaliya. The bullet ravaged his intestine. He was transferred to an Israeli hospital, and he died Wednesday after 12 days of agony.
Abu Hussein is the second Palestinian journalist in four weeks who died because of Israeli army fire. At the beginning of the month, Yasser Murtaja of Ain Media died while filming Palestinian demonstrations close to the Gaza-Israel border.
Will Israeli authorities accuse Abu Hussein of being a terrorist, as they did with Murtaja? Photos and videos show of the event show him wearing a blue jacket and a helmet saying “TV,” 50 meters beyond a pile of tires demonstrators had set on fire. Abu Hussein was only doing his job as a reporter. He is one of over 40 Palestinians killed since March 30.
The journalist’s funeral took place Wednesday as Gaza waited for the body of Fadi al Batsh to arrive. Al Batsh is the engineer who was murdered by two men whom local authorities describe as “foreign agents” on April 21 in Kuala Lumpur. His family openly blames Mossad. His body arrived in Cairo on Wednesday, to be then transferred to Gaza. A few days ago, Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman had asked Egypt to block the transfer of al Batsh’s body to Gaza — the Netanyahu government describes him as an Islamist who specialized in designing drones.
Meanwhile, Palestinians are angry and outraged at Ben Deri’s sentence to nine months in jail. Ben Deri was an Israeli border police agent who killed 17-year-old Palestinian Nadmi Nawara with a precision rifle on Nakba Day four years ago, during a demonstration near Ofer prison. Deri had been authorized to fire rubber bullets, but the agent loaded his rifle with real ones. He was accused of involuntary manslaughter, but negotiated a plea bargain by admitting he had “accidentally” loaded real ammunition into his rifle. Another Palestinian young man died that day, but the authorities never found a culprit.
Soon, Elor Azaria will be released. He was an Israeli private first class who had killed a Palestinian attacker in cold blood two years ago in Hebron. The attacker was lying on the ground, severely wounded and unable to cause harm. Azaria was charged with involuntary manslaughter and spent 18 months in jail — but then saw his sentence reduced to nine months.
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