Qatar is placed among top countries worldwide helping rebuild the besieged Gaza Strip following the occupation aggression in 2021, with a grant estimated at $500 million.
A top Qatari official has allegedly vowed to fund the reconstruction of Al Jalaa Tower and name it after the slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, a source told local Palestinian media.
The Chairman of Qatar Committee for the Reconstruction of Gaza, Ambassador Mohammed Al Emadi is currently visiting the besieged Gaza Strip where he responded to requests made by officials in Gaza to rebuild the tower, An informed source who chose to remain anonymous told the Palestine-based Al Ayyam.
The media tower block housed a number of major media outlets, including Al Jazeera and the Associated Press. The building was entirely demolished by Zionist regime bombs in 2021.
The source informed the news agency that an agreement has been made to name the tower after the late Shireen Abu Akleh.
However, another source familiar with the matter told Doha News that the idea is being studied but confirmed no vows have yet been made.
The veteran journalist was killed by Israeli forces on May 11 as she was covering Israeli raids of Jenin. Abu Akleh was shot in the head by an Israeli sniper despite being in her press flak jacket and helmet, clearly distinguishing as a member of the press.
The precise spot where she was killed was not covered by the helmet, suggesting a deliberate targeting. Qatar had condemned the brutal killing of Abu Akleh and called for an investigation.
In a matter of few days, Al Emadi is expected to announce the details of the reconstruction process of the media block, which is located in the Rimal neighbourhood in the centre of Gaza City.
The rebuilding of the tower is seen as a significant milestone in the momentum of reconstructing the destroyed buildings since the aggression on Palestinian land last year.
Speaking at 2022’s World Economic Forum in Davos on Monday, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani addressed the sufferings of the Palestinians under the grip of the occupation saying that Palestine remains an “open wound”.
He also noted that the issue of Palestinian needs to be equally attended to by the world, similar to the way in which the international community has shone light on the Ukrainian crisis.
Bombing of Gaza-based media tower
An Israeli air raid flattened an 11-storey building housing 60 residential apartments and the offices of news organisations in Gaza City on May 15, 2021.
The tower, built in the mid-1990s, was one of Gaza City’s oldest high-rise buildings.
Widely regarded as an attempt to hush journalists covering the Zionist regime’s aggression, the bombing of Al Jalaa came just hours after an Israeli air raid at Shati killed 10 members of the same family – eight children and two women – celebrating Eid Al Fitr to mark the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
“The Israeli army claimed there were ‘military interests of the Hamas intelligence’ in the building, a standard line used after bombing buildings in Gaza, and it accused the group running the territory of using journalists as human shields. However, it provided no evidence to back up its claims,” Al Jazeera reported.
Gary Pruitt, president and CEO of the Associated Press told Al Jazeera: “I can tell you that we’ve been in that building for about 15 years for our bureau. We certainly had no sense that Hamas was there.”
2021 is considered the deadliest year for Palestinians since the deadly attacks of 2014.
*This article was updated to include information from a source familiar with the matter.