IDF Explain Shooting Of United Nations Official
November 23rd, 2002
Initial findings of the investigation into the IDF operation in the Jenin refugee camp.
framework of IDF activity against terrorist infrastructures,
IDF forces operated yesterday (Nov. 22) in the Jenin refugee
camp. During the activity, Abdalla Wahash, a senior
operative of the Islamic Jihad, was arrested. Wahash is
responsible for numerous terror attacks among them the
suicide bombing in the Karkur junction. Prior to his arrest
Wahash had been planning a suicide bombing by use of a car
bomb in Israel.
The IDF activity in the Jenin refugee camp was carried out under an exchange of heavy fire between Palestinian terrorists and IDF forces. Three IDF jeeps and the personal gear of an Israeli soldier were damaged.
The initial investigation of the events shows that the UNRWA headquarters in the Jenin refugee camp had been used by the terrorists as cover from which to shoot at IDF soldiers. In addition to fire from within the UNRWA headquarters, at least seven cases were identified in which direct fire was aimed towards IDF forces from an alley near the UNRWA headquarters. In two cases terrorists opened fired while using civilians as human shields. In one of the cases, a terrorist opened fire while taking cover behind a woman holding an UNRWA flag. In these cases the IDF forces operating under strict regulations for opening fire, did not retaliate in such a manner that might endanger innocent lives.
In regards to the death of an UNRWA worker, the initial investigation shows that while shots were being fired towards IDF forces from the UNRWA headquarters, two IDF soldiers identified a man holding an object resembling a pistol. As a result, the soldiers opened fire toward him and wounded him.
Following the event, the IDF immediately began preparing to evacuate the UNWRA worker to hospital in Israel for medical care, however, he passed away on the way to the Palestinian hospital in Jenin. The IDF expresses regrets for the death of the UNRWA worker.
The IDF is continuing the expansive investigation of the events and condemns the use that terrorists make of populated areas for their activities. Such actions create situations for urban warfare and endanger the lives of the innocent population.