Wednesday 29 March 2023

Shireen Abu Akleh: Dozens of US lawmakers demand FBI probe into killing

More than 50 US lawmakers have signed a letter demanding the FBI and State Department investigate the killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, after Israel's military said it would not investigate the case.

The letter, spearheaded by Democratic Congressmen Andre Carson and Luis Correa, says the US should be directly involved in an investigation of the Palestinian journalist, who was an American citizen.


"As Members of Congress, we are deeply concerned by the death of Ms. Abu Akleh. Journalists worldwide must be protected at all costs," said the letter, shared with Middle East Eye on Friday.


"We request the State Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) launch an investigation into Ms. Abu Akleh’s death. We also request the US Department of State determines whether any US laws protecting Ms. Abu Akleh, an American citizen, were violated."


As of Friday, the letter has obtained a total of 57 signatories, according to a tally shared with MEE by Carson's office; ranging from progressive Democrats to more moderate, and even pro-Israel lawmakers in the party. It was first reported by The Intercept earlier this week.


While Carson and other cosigners including Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Marie Newman, and Betty McCollum have been critical of unconditional support to Israel, others that signed the letter have been staunch supporters of the longtime US ally.


Correa, a California Democrat, has sponsored legislation opposing the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, and cosponsored a resolution condemning UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which characterises Israeli settlements as a "flagrant violation of international law".


He has also been endorsed by the Pro-Israel America political action committee (PAC).



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