May 11, 2023

Van Hollen Statement Marking One Year Since the Shooting Death of American Journalist Shireen Abu Akleh

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement marking one year since the shooting death of American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh:

“Today we mark the solemn one-year anniversary of the shooting death of American citizen and journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, who was killed while reporting on an Israeli Defense Forces operation in the West Bank. 

“At the time of her shooting, Shireen was wearing her press vest and full press regalia. She was doing her job, reporting the facts. 

“But one year after her shooting death, Shireen’s family, her press colleagues, and the people of the United States have not received the answers and the accountability they are due. One year after her killing, we still do not have a transparent, independent investigation.

“As President Biden recently made clear at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, we have a duty to protect American citizens around the world. As he also said, we have a duty to help protect journalists who work to present the facts and report the truth. That's why we must not rest until we get all the facts about the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh. 

“One year later, I am still committed to getting the full truth about her killing and getting accountability — and I will not stop pressing until we have them.”

Senator Van Hollen has repeatedly called for an independent and transparent investigation into the death of Shireen Abu Akleh. Most recently, he has pressed the State Department to release a new report compiled by the U.S. Security Coordinator for Israel and the Palestinian Authority on Shireen’s shooting death. He followed up on this request in his questioning during a recent Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing, in which an administration official acknowledged the need for accountability in Shireen’s death.  He has also led two letters pressing for answers, which can be found here and here. The Senator has also authored amendments requiring the State Department and Administration to provide further information on her death, including one that was adopted on a bipartisan basis by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last September.