The General administration of Saint Joseph Hospital in occupied Jerusalem accused the Israeli authorities of violating human rights and disrespecting the Catholic Church after beating mourners carrying the coffin of slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, who was killed by Israeli forces last Wednesday.
General Director of Saint Joseph Hospital Jamil Koussa told reporters on Monday at St Joseph Hospital that the incident, broadcast around the world, was a “disproportionate use of force” against the Palestinian flag-waving crowd of thousands proceeding from the hospital to a nearby Catholic church in Jerusalem’s Old City.
The police attack, Koussa told reporters, “is a severe violation of international norms and regulations, including the fundamental human right of freedom of religion, which must be observed also in a public space”.
“Israel’s police invasion and disproportionate use of force, attacking mourners, striking them with batons, using smoke grenades, shooting rubber bullets, frightening the hospital’s patients, is a severe violation of international norms and regulations,” he said.
St Joseph Hospital also released security camera footage that showed Israeli forces storming the building where Abu Akleh’s body had been lying, and said 13 people were injured as a result of the raid.
Last Friday, dozens of mourners suffered different injuries and bruises after the Israeli occupation police forces brutally attacked the funeral of the Palestinian iconic journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in the French hospital.
The Israeli occupation police used stun grenades, tear gas and batons in assaulting the mourners, preventing them from carrying Abu Akleh’s coffin on foot.
Eyewitnesses reported that Abu Akleh’s casket was about to fall to the ground after the mourners lose balance due to the Israeli assault.
The attack on Friday drew worldwide condemnation and added to the shock and outrage towards Abu Akleh’s killing as she covered an Israeli raid on the occupied West Bank.