Israel Says Islamic Jihad Rocket Misfire Caused Gaza Hospital Blast: Israeli Defense Forces

Israel Says Islamic Jihad Rocket Misfire Caused Gaza Hospital Blast: Israeli Defense Forces

Oct. 18, 2023, 9:03 a.m.

After Hamas, Arab countries blame Israel, IDF says analysis shows errant rocket fired by terror group hit Al-Ahli hospital; videos appear to support Israel’s position

The Israel Defense Forces on Tuesday night said it was not behind a blast at a hospital in the Gaza Strip, which according to Hamas health authorities led to hundreds of deaths, and that a misfired rocket launched by Gaza terrorists led to the explosion at the Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital.

Palestinians and much of the Arab world blamed Israel, saying it had struck the medical facility and that hundreds had been killed. Jerusalem was swiftly condemned by Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and others.

The Hamas-run Health Ministry in Gaza initially said at least 500 people were killed, AP reported, a figure that was later amended to between 200 and 300, as reported by AFP.

Terror group Hamas called the blast “a war crime,” and the World Health Organization also issued a rebuke.

After initially saying it was looking into the matter, the IDF denied involvement, saying it had not been operating in the area at the time of the blast.

In a brief video circulated in English, IDF spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said “an analysis of IDF operational systems indicates that a barrage of rockets was fired by terrorists in Gaza, passing in close proximity to the Ahli hospital in Gaza at the time it was hit.”

“Intelligence from multiple sources we have in our hands indicates that Islamic Jihad is responsible for the failed rocket launch which hit the hospital in Gaza,” he added.

The Israeli military said Gaza-based terror organizations routinely fire rockets indiscriminately toward Israel and about 450 rockets have fallen inside Gaza since the beginning of the war on October 7, “endangering and harming the lives of Gazan residents.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement in which he said: “So the whole world knows: The barbaric terrorists in Gaza are the ones who attacked the Gaza hospital, not the IDF.

“Those who cruelly murdered our children, murder their children as well.”

President Isaac Herzog called accusations that Israel had struck the hospital “a blood libel.”

“An Islamic Jihad missile has killed many Palestinians at a Gazan hospital — a place where lives should be saved,” Herzog tweeted.

Source; The Times of Israel

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