The IDF determined that the Gaza hospital explosion was caused by a misfired Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket
The investigation by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) showed that the explosion at the Al-Ahli Baptist hospital in Gaza was caused by a failed rocket launch by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). The blast and subsequent fire is reported to have killed and wounded approximately 500 Palestinians.
According to the IDF, approximately 450 rockets fired by the Gaza-based terrorist organizations have landed within the Strip borders since October 7.
The rocket hit the hospital on Tuesday shortly after 7pm local time. Initially, the Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry claimed 500 people were killed in the aftermath of the blast, but has since revised the death toll down to 200 to 300.
The explosion was immediately blamed on an Israeli airstrike, with the Arab world condemning the alleged airstrike. Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas declared three days of mourning, and called the incident a “massacre.” Protests immediately broke out across the Arab and Muslim world, as well as in several European cities.
More than four hours after the explosion, the IDF released the initial results of its investigation which denied the claims of an airstrike. “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,” said IDF spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari.
I can confirm, that an analysis of the IDF operational systems indicates, that a barrage of rockets was fired by terrorists in Gaza, passing in close proximity to the Al-Ahli Al-Mahdi hospital in Gaza at the time it was hit >> pic.twitter.com/OcyuDHJGF8— דובר צה״ל דניאל הגרי – Daniel Hagari (@IDFSpokesperson) October 17, 2023
On his X (formerly Twitter) account, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated, “The entire world should know: It was barbaric terrorists in Gaza that attacked the hospital in Gaza, and not the IDF. Those who brutally murdered our children also murder their own children,” he added. Opposition Leader Yair Lapid and a number of other lawmakers put out similar statements on social media. Israel’s President Herzog put out a statement saying “Shame on the media who swallow the lies of Hamas and Islamic Jihad – broadcasting a 21st century blood libel around the globe. Shame on the vile terrorists in Gaza who willfully spill the blood of the innocent.”
The entire world should know: It was barbaric terrorists in Gaza that attacked the hospital in Gaza, and not the IDF.— Benjamin Netanyahu – בנימין נתניהו (@netanyahu) October 17, 2023
Those who brutally murdered our children also murder their own children.
U.S. President Joe Biden will be in Israel on Wednesday to pay a wartime solidarity visit. He was reported to have spoken to Israel’s Netanyahu over the phone after the Al-Ahli hospital incident, right before take off. Biden put out his own statement addressing the incident writing, “I am outraged and deeply saddened by the explosion at the Al-Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza, and the terrible loss of life that resulted.” He added that “the United States stands unequivocally for the protection of civilian life during conflict and we mourn the patients, medical staff and other innocents killed or wounded in this tragedy”.
I am outraged and deeply saddened by the explosion at the Al Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza, and the terrible loss of life that resulted. Immediately upon hearing this news, I spoke with King Abdullah II of Jordan, and Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel and have directed my national…— President Biden (@POTUS) October 17, 2023