Military chief Aviv Kohavi held a closed meeting with several generals yesterday regarding the possibility Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh was hit by an Israeli bullet in Jenin on Wednesday, according to a television report.
Two sources familiar with the discussion say this possibility was defined as “very likely,” Channel 12 news reports.
The meeting was held before the Israel Defense Forces published an interim probe report, where an incident of Israeli fire was listed as one of the two scenarios that may have led to the death of Abu Akleh, alongside the possibility of Palestinian gunfire.
According to the network, some of the meeting’s participants considered it no less likely and possibly more likely that she was hit by an errant IDF bullet than by the indiscriminate Palestinian fire.
Kohavi reportedly said these were premature and speculative assessments — and ordered more expert input and a reconstruction of the events, conducted by troops earlier today.
The IDF chief also said we “certainly think it is possible” that she was hit by IDF fire, but that examining the bullet pulled from Abu Akleh’s neck would provide definitive answers.
The IDF spokesman tells the network in response that it cannot definitively determine the circumstances of the reporter’s death, and the military will continue to investigate and is committed to finding the truth.