Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISPT007

Incident date

May 11, 2021

Location

عمارة طيبة في مخيم الشاطئ, Taiba building in Al Shati’ refugee camp, Gaza Strip, the Gaza Strip

Geolocation

31.528774, 34.446597 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A woman and her disabled son were killed in an alleged Israeli airstrike on their building in Gaza’s al Shati refugee camp. They were identified as Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh and Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh.

The airstrike hit the Taiba building, where they lived, in the early hours of the morning on May 11th, 2021. Early reporting indicated the death of one woman, but further reporting identified a second death – the woman’s son who Al Haq said had cerebral palsy. The Associated Press reported that another man was also killed in the airstrike, citing health officials, but no additional information was provided.

Al Haq found two people had been injured in the incident, with them both in a medium to critical condition. According to Palestinian Centre for Human Rights they had been in a nearby house when the strike occurred. @ahmed_rade_2017 shared a photo of a man identified as Ahmed Alsyed, saying he had been seriously injured in the airstrike on the Taiba building. Other sources reported up to four injuries.

The Israeli Defence Force said it had targeted a senior official of the armed wing of Hamas in the attack, according to Haaretz. A similar statement from the Israeli military was reported by Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor – the home of a battalion commander had allegedly been targeted. But field investigations by the organisation reportedly found no-one had been in the apartment hit at the time. It instead resulted in the collapse of the ceiling of the apartment underneath which lead to the fatalities. Airwars acquired the official statement from the IDF referring to “A  Hamas battalion commander was also targeted” but this statement doesn’t specifically reference the location of the commander.

The building targeted consisted of 13 apartments over seven floors. Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights reported that the top floor was hit with three missiles, while he Palestinian Centre for Human Rights said it was hit with two.

A neighbour, Saleh al-Khaldi, recounted the events of the morning to Middle East Eye.“We were at the mosque doing the al-Fajr [dawn] prayers when a massive explosion rocked the neighbourhood. I ran out to the street to find out that [Israeli warplanes] had targeted a building belonging to the Nasman family, which had apartments that were rented to other families,” he said. “I helped pull out a number of injured residents, as well as two martyred people; a woman and her son who were peacefully sleeping in their home.”

One of Subuh’s surviving children told the Palestinian Ma’an news agency, “I bid farewell to the most precious person in my heart, my mother, and I ask God to have mercy on her.”

B’Tselem collected testimonies from two of Amira’s sons, who are also Abdul-Rahman’s brothers:

Mu’az Subuh, 29, told B’Tselem that “On Monday, 10 May 2021, I went to my mother’s with my wife and daughter for Iftar dinner. We stayed with them until 1:30 A.M. I had a feeling the situation was going to escalate, so I suggested they move in with us. It’s really close, less than a kilometer away, but I thought it would better for them to stay at my place, mainly because my brother, ‘Abd a-Rahman, has cerebral palsy. But my mother refused. We went back home…In the morning, I prayed the dawn prayers and went to my mother’s house. I got to their street around 4:30 A.M. When I was about 50 meters away from the building, I heard a very loud explosion. There were clouds of smoke and dust, and I heard people shouting. The building my mother and brothers lived in had been bombed. I tried to get into the building, but people there stopped me because they were afraid of another strike. They suggested I wait for the ambulance and the Civil Defense crew. They tried to reassure me and told me they’d seen my brother ‘Ali at the mosque and had prayed with him. I felt on the verge of a nervous breakdown. I was sure my family was dead. I saw the sixth and seventh floors had been completely demolished. They looked like one floor. I lost all hope that anyone in my family would make it out alive. Some neighbors went up to the apartment and came back down and told me my brothers Baraa and ‘Ali and ‘Ali’s wife Nasmah were alive. As for my mother and my brother ‘Abd a-Rahman, they said, “We didn’t find them. We’re looking for them, but it looks very bad.” Then they told me my mother was injured and on the way to hospital, and that I should go there. When I arrived, I discovered she’d been killed. I hugged her, kissed her body, and screamed and shouted, “I told you to come to our house! Why didn’t you listen to me?!” Then they put my mother in the morgue.”

Baraa Subuh, 27, told B’Tselem that “On Tuesday, 11 May 2021, at 2:00 A.M., I came home and found my mother and my brother ‘Abd a-Rahman awake. My mother was reading the Quran. I sat down with her, ‘Abd a-Rahman and my sister-in-law Nasmah for the meal before the fast. Then I went back to the living room. At around 4:30 A.M., my brother ‘Ali went to the mosque to pray and my mother told me to go to bed. We went to our bedrooms but a few minutes later, before I’d fallen asleep, the house suddenly collapsed on top of me. The wardrobe fell on me, too, and the wall behind me fell out to the road. There was a lot of dust and I had trouble breathing. There was no power and the house was pitch black. I managed to pull myself out from under the debris and went to the room where my mother and ‘Abd a-Rahman sleep. It was in ruins. I called out but couldn’t see anyone. I started removing the debris to get them out. It was only then that I realized Israeli airplanes had bombed the house while we were in it. There was no warning before they fired. The solar boilers on the roof were leaking into our apartment. I started running around the house looking for ‘Abd a-Rahman and the rest of the family. I found my sister-in-law Nasmah and told her to go down to the ground floor. I also found my brother ‘Ali, who was looking for my mother and ‘Abd a-Rahman. In the end, we found mother’s body under the rubble. I started removing the debris that was covering her. Meanwhile, an ambulance and Civil Defense crews arrived, so I put her on a stretcher and told ‘Ali to go with her. I stayed home to look for ‘Abd a-Rahman with the Civil Defense crew and people from the neighborhood. Suddenly, I felt weak and short of breath. I was given first aid and taken to a-Shifaa Hospital. ‘Abd a-Rahman was under the rubble for an hour and a half before we found him. The paramedics brought him to the hospital. Because of the amount of rubble, I didn’t believe he’d survive and when we found him, he was lifeless. When I saw that my brother ‘Abd a-Rahman was dead, I felt great sorrow. I also saw my mother lying lifeless and felt she was sending a message that she wanted to die along with ‘Abd a-Rahman, because he was disabled and we have no father, so there would be no one to care for him without her. ‘Abd a-Rahman was very attached to her.”

Most sources reported that Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh was 19 years old, although a single source recorded him as 13-years-old. His mother, Amira, was aged between 57 and 61.

The majority of sources attributed the strikes to Israel. B’Tselem pointed out that “A Hamas military wing operative lived on the seventh floor. He was not home at the time. It is not known whether that was the reason for the strike.” Mu’az and Baraa Subuh, relatives of the victims, said that there was no warning before the strike.

The incident occured at 04:40:00 local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (3)

  • Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh 59 years old female killed
  • Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh 19 years old male killed
  • Baraa Subuh 27 years old male injured
  • Ahmed Alsyed Adult male Twitter source reported that Ahmed Alsyed had been seriously injured in the incident injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (1 woman1–2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–4
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Military
  • Suspected target
    Palestinian Forces

Sources (53) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (27) [ collapse]

  • Caption translation: Occupation warplanes bombed a civilian residential apartment near Al-Susi Mosque, west of the city of #Gaza, injuring two civilians (image via @AbuZiad486)
  • Caption translation: Occupation warplanes bombed a civilian residential apartment near Al-Susi Mosque, west of the city of #Gaza, injuring two civilians (image via @AbuZiad486)
  • Caption translation: Occupation warplanes bombed a civilian residential apartment near Al-Susi Mosque, west of the city of #Gaza, injuring two civilians (image via @AbuZiad486)
  • Caption translation: Our brother and beloved of our hearts, Abu Rashad; Ahmed Alsyed Today, he was seriously injured after the bombing of Taiba building next to Al-Susi Mosque, west of Gaza Your prayers for a speedy recovery and may God have mercy on him and be kind to him (image via @ahmed_rade_2017)
  • Mourners carry a body at the funeral of Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh and Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh, both killed in an airstrike on May 11th, 2021 in al Shati' refugee camp (image via @AlmakdesyMedia)
  • Caption translated: Dozens of Palestinians take part in the funeral of the elderly martyr Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh, 57, and her son, Shahid Abdul Rahman, who has special needs, as a result of the targeting of their apartment in the Beach Camp in Gaza (via @AlmakdesyMedia)
  • Mourners at the funeral of mother and son killed in the May 11th, 2021 strike in al Shati' refugee camp (image via @AlmakdesyMedia)
  • The area of the airstrike on May 11th, 2021 in al Shati' refugee camp. At least two civilians were killed in the incident (image via @qudsn)
  • A man walking through the rubble from the May 11th, 2021 airstrike on a building in al Shati' refugee camp (image via @qudsn)
  • The damaged Taiba building in al Shati' refugee camp. The airstrike killed a mother and son (image via @qudsn)
  • Image caption: Pictures from the recent Israeli targeting in the Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza, which targeted a residential building on top of its owners' heads while they were sleeping, and led to the death of a citizen and the injury of others (via @YouthGoDigital)
  • Image shows the site of the airstrike on Taiba building in Gaza's al Shati' camp (image via @Almeqdad)
  • Image caption: Apartments were targeted in minutes after dawn prayers, on the heads of their sleeping civilians in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza, which led to the death of a woman and her son (via @Almeqdad)
  • Image caption: Apartments were targeted in minutes after dawn prayers, on the heads of their sleeping civilians in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza, which led to the death of a woman and her son (via @Almeqdad)
  • The top of Taiba building, which was hit in a strike on May 11th, 2021 (image via @Almeqdad)
  • Translated caption: 3 martyrs, including a 57-year-old woman and her disabled son, as the occupation aircraft targeted their house in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City (via @OMN_4)
  • Image shows the building hit in the May 11th, 2021 strike in Gaza's al Shati' refugee camp. The strike killed at least two civilians (via @Amel_Zarouk)
  • Image caption: Pictures of 3 martyrs, including a 60-year-old woman and her disabled son, after the Zionist warplanes targeted their home in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City (via @Amel_Zarouk)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image shared alongside another of a different deceased victim's hand. Image caption reads: The martyr Amira Abdel Fattah Sobh.The martyr / Abd al-Rahman Yusef Subuh (via Ali Abu Zayd)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image caption reads: The funeral of the elderly martyr Amira Abdel-Fattah Subuh, and her martyr son, "Abdel-Rahman," who is a person with special needs (via Pal Post)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image appears to show the hand of the deceased. At least two civilians were killed in the May 11th, 2021 airstrike in al Shati' camp (image via Ali Abu Zayd)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    A reporter from Palestine Chronicle photographed the funeral of the mother and son killed in the May 11th, 2021 strike in al Shati' refugee camp in Gaza (via Palestine Chronicle)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Image shows the funeral of two civilians killed in the May 11th, 2021 airstrike in al Shati' camp. Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh and Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh, mother and son, were killed in the incident (image via Palestine Chronicle)
  • Mourners at the funeral of Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh and Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh, a mother and son killed in an airstrike on May 11th, 2021 (image via Palestine Chronicle)
  • Photos of the funeral procession of Amira Abdel Fattah Subuh and Abdul-Rahman Yusef Ali Subuh (via Palestine Chronicle)
  • Amirah Subuh and her son ‘Abd a-Rahman Subuh, who were both killed in Al Shati camp on May 11, 2021. (Image posted by B'Tselem)
  • Baraa Subuh, brother and son to the mother and son killed in strikes on Al Shati on May 11, 2021. He was also injured in the strikes. (Image posted by B'Tselem)

Geolocation notes (3) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention an apartment being struck in the Taiba Building (عمارة طيبة) in the Al Shati Camp (مخيّم الشاطئ‎). Analyzing visual material from sources, we have narrowed down the location to these exact coordinates: 31.528774, 34.446597.

Israeli Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Israeli Military
  • Israeli Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (1 woman1–2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–4
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Military
  • Suspected target
    Palestinian Forces

Sources (53) [ collapse]