Ghufran Warasneh, who had been shot by IDF troops on Wednesday when she allegedly approached them brandishing a knife, was characterized by UN Special Rapporteur on the occupied Palestinian territory Francesca Albanese and Palestinian activists as being “another journalist killed” by Israel last week.
“The news of another Palestinian journalist killed, hits with deep sorrow,” tweeted Albanese. She called for journalists to be respected and not harmed, and to actively ensure that they were protected. “Condemning the death of a prominent journalist while glossing over the rest, breeds impunity.”
The tweet was later deleted, according to Albanese, accidentally.
“The Israeli apartheid regime just shot and killed the second Palestinian journalist in less than a month,” said Benjamin Norton, editor at Multipolarista.
Pro-Israel critics asserted that Warasneh had been involved in a terrorist attack near the al-Arroub refugee camp at the time of her death, and had previously been arrested for another stabbing attack attempt. According to Channel 12, Warasneh had been involved in a previous attack.
“Of course what the UN Palestinian ‘Special Rapporteur’ conveniently omits is that the so-called ‘journalist’ Ghufran Warasneh lunged at IDF soldiers with a knife in attempt to kill them…and that was not first time she tried that,” Arsen Ostrovsky, chairman and CEO of The International Legal Forum, replied to Albanese.
According to Alarraby, Warasneh had just been hired as a news presenter and was expected to begin work that day.
Albanese responded to the criticism, stating that “the excessive use of force, and the widespread recourse to lethal force — the last resort in law enforcement operations —warrants a comprehensive, thorough investigation.”
Pro-Israel critics have claimed that some have attempted to characterize Warasneh as a journalist to capitalize on the death of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, who was killed last month during a firefight between IDF soldiers and Palestinian gunman.
Thus far, Israeli investigation into who fired the bullet that killed Abu Akleh has been inconclusive, but the Palestinian Authority claims that its investigation has shown that Israeli soldiers were at fault.
“Besides ignoring the fact she was armed with a knife, the haters claimed she was a journalist, in what seems to be a transparent attempt to further exploit the recent death of Shireen Abu Akleh,” assessed David Lange, head of Pro-Israel blog IsraellyCool.
“Here is the latest attack by Israeli forces on the funeral of yet another Palestinian journalist — Ghufran Warasneh who was killed yesterday in Hebron,” said Irish Sinn Féin party National Chairperson Declan Kearney, sharing a video on social media of Israeli border policemen clashing with Palestinian mourners at a checkpoint.
At Abu Akleh’s funeral, Israel police physically engaged mourners, striking pallbearers with clubs. Police claimed that they had “intervened to disperse the mob and prevent them from taking the coffin, so that the funeral could proceed as planned in accordance with the wishes of the family.”