Red Crescent: Israel targets ambulances and abuses a paramedic in Gaza

Red Crescent: Israel targets ambulances and abuses a paramedic in Gaza

The Palestinian Red Crescent Society said on Sunday that the Israeli army targeted ambulances in the Gaza Strip and abused a Palestinian medic after detaining him, despite its action in coordination with the United Nations.

The association added in a statement that it evacuated, “with coordination from the United Nations, yesterday (Saturday) 11 wounded people with very critical injuries, including amputations and head injuries, from the National Baptist Hospital in Gaza City to hospitals in the southern Gaza Strip.”

She stated, "A convoy of 6 ambulances belonging to the association moved, accompanied by United Nations vehicles, from Khan Yunis, after waiting nearly 4 hours to get the first green light to move toward the military checkpoint that separates northern and southern Gaza."

According to the association, “The convoy waited a full hour to get a second green light to cross the checkpoint, after which it was subjected to a thorough inspection that lasted about two hours, during which two paramedics were detained and released immediately after the convoy was allowed to pass.”

She continued that as the convoy left the checkpoint towards the hospital to bring the wounded, “upon its arrival near the Kuwait Roundabout, the occupation soldiers opened fire on one of the ambulance vehicles, as the side window of the vehicle was hit and the bullet lodged in its body.”

On the way back, from the Baptist Hospital, the association reported that “the convoy’s path was obstructed and paramedic Rami Al-Qatawi was re-detained, and due to the careful inspection, examination and interrogation procedures at the checkpoint for more than two hours, one of the wounded was martyred.”

She said that after being obstructed for more than 3 hours, the ambulances left the checkpoint while paramedic Al-Qatawi continued to be detained for more than 4 hours, “during which he was subjected to beatings, abuse, and blackmail during the interrogation and investigation process.”

She added that the paramedic "arrived at the other side of the checkpoint in a bad condition after having to walk more than 2 kilometers with nothing but his clothes and handcuffs on a bumpy road and in the bitter cold."