On Tuesday, Israeli forces, disguised as civilian women and medical workers, raided a hospital in the occupied West Bank, resulting in the death of three Palestinian militants.
The Palestinian Health Ministry said Israeli forces opened fire inside the wards of the Ibn Sina Hospital in the town of Jenin.
The ministry condemned the raid and called on the international community to pressure Israel’s military to halt such operations in hospitals.
A hospital spokesperson said there was no exchange of fire, indicating that it was a targeted killing.
The military said the militants were using the hospital as a hideout, without providing evidence. It alleged that one of those targeted in the raid had transferred weapons and ammunition to others for a planned attack, purportedly inspired by the Hamas assault on southern Israel on October 7 that triggered the war in Gaza.
According to AP, footage said to be security camera video from the hospital that circulated on social media showed about a dozen undercover forces, most of them armed, dressed as women with Muslim headscarves or hospital staff in scrubs or white doctor’s coats.
One in a surgical mask carried a rifle in one arm and a folded wheelchair in the other. The forces were seen patting down one man who kneeled against a wall, his arms raised.
The footage has not been verified.
The war began when hundreds of Hamas-led militants stormed into Israel, killing about 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and abducting about 250 others. Over 100 were released during a weeklong cease-fire in November in exchange for Palestinians imprisoned by Israel.
In response, Israel launched a blistering air, sea and ground offensive that killed more than 26,700 people in Gaza, according to the Health Ministry in the Hamas-run territory.
The ministry count does not distinguish between fighters and noncombatants, but it says about two-thirds of the dead are women and minors.
The military said in Tuesday’s hospital raid, forces killed Mohammed Jalamneh, 27, who it said was planning an imminent attack. The two other men killed, brothers Basel and Mohammed Ghazawi, were hiding inside the hospital and were involved in attacks, the military claimed.
The military did not provide details on how the three were killed. Its statement said Jalamneh was armed with a pistol but made no mention of an exchange of fire.
Hamas claimed the three men as members, calling the operation “a cowardly assassination.”
Hospital spokesperson Tawfiq al-Shobaki said there was no exchange. He said the Israelis attacked doctors, nurses, and hospital security during the raid.
“What happened is a precedent,” he said.
“There was never an assassination inside a hospital. There were arrests and assaults, but not an assassination.”
He said Basel Ghazawi had been a patient in the hospital since October with partial paralysis.