Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISPT008

Incident date

May 11, 2021

Location

عمارة الجندي المجهول, Al Jundi Al Majool Tower, the Gaza Strip

Geolocation

31.51836, 34.447176 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Three members of Islamic Jihad were killed in an Israeli airstrike on a tower block in central Gaza. Numerous sources also reported up to eight injuries, with two reporting children among the injured.

The airstrike targeted the Al-Jundi Al-Majhool building, often referred to as the “Unknown Soldier” building in Gaza’s upmarket Rimal neighbourhood. There was limited information on the identities of those injured or the extent of the injuries in the reporting around the incident. Wafa News reported that most of the eight injured were children, while Al Watan alleged one child had been wounded. Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights recorded seven injuries, all of which they said were moderate to light.

There was significantly more information on the three men who were killed in the airstrike. They were identifed as Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa and Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata.

Some sources identified the men as civilians but information however emerged indicating they were militants. Their deaths were announced of the website of Islamic Jihad. A statement posted on the site read: “On the May 11th, 2021, and on the second day of the Battle of Saif al-Quds, [the name given by militants in Gaza for the May war] the commander Sameh al-Mamluk was on a date with the martyrdom, accompanied by his Mujahideen brothers Kamal Taysir Qureiqa and Muhammad Yahya Abu al-Atta, following a cowardly assassination carried out by the Zionist planes…”

According to the Times of Israel, a spokesperson for the Al-Quds Brigade, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s armed wing, vowed revenge for the deaths. “Our martyrs, commanders Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa and Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata, bled, and we affirm that the response to their assassination will be harsh.”

Images also appeared on social media showing the three men in military fatigues wearing hats which appeared to have the Islamic Jihad emblem on the front.

The Israeli Defence Forces confirmed the airstrike in a tweet which included a video of the incident. The caption read, “This is the moment that the IDF & Israel Security Agency carried out a targeted strike against Islamic Jihad commander, Samah Abed al-Mamluk & other senior members of his unit. They were among those responsible for hundreds of rockets fired at Israelis.”

“An attack was carried out on a hiding place in which senior members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s rocket apparatus were staying,” the Israeli military and the Shin Bet said, according to the Times of Israel.

The main target of the strike appeared to be Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, identified by the Times of Israel as a senior commander of the armed wing. According to the Islamic Jihad website, he joined the Al Quds Brigade in 2004. The other two fighters were reportedly field commanders who oversaw rocket strikes on Israel.

According to World Israel News, Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata was the deputy commander of the Gaza Brigade and one of the heads of the special rocket unit.

There was some confusion in the reporting as Jerusalem Post reported a Hassan Abu al-Ata as being killed in a different strike. He was referred to as deputy commander of the Gaza Brigade as well, with both sources noting the deceased was a brother of Baha Abu al-Atta, a senior Islamic Jihad commander who was killed alongside his wife in an Israeli airstrike in 2019.

An IDF press statement on the 11th May announced that the IDF had struck a multi-story building used by Hamas, stating: “Inside the building were multiple military units used by Hamas, including headquarters used for military research and development, military intelligence offices and more. Prior to the strike, the IDF provided advance warning to civilians in the building and provided sufficient time for them to evacuate the site.”

All three men killed in the airstrike were married, according to the Islamic Jihad website.

The incident occured at 11:25:00 local time.

  • Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk 34 years old male killed
  • Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa 34 years old male killed
  • Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata 30 years old male killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    7–8
  • 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.
  • Known attacker
    Israeli Military
  • Known target
    Palestinian Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3

Sources (41) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (25) [ collapse]

  • An image appearing to show the three men killed in the May 11th, 2021 strike in central Gaza in military fatigues (via @fady_jouni)
  • Image shows Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata, one of the men killed in the May 11th, 2021 strike, in military fatigue. It includes the website address of Islamic Jihad, where the image may have originated (via @fady_jouni)
  • Image shows Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa, one of the men killed in the May 11th, 2021 airstrike in central Gaza, in military fatigue. It includes the website address of Islamic Jihad, where the image may have originated (via @fady_jouni)
  • Image shows Kamal Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, one of the men killed in the May 11th, 2021 airstrike in central Gaza, in military fatigues. It includes the website address of Islamic Jihad, where the image may have originated (via @fady_jouni)
  • Translated caption: The apartment that was targeted by the warplanes in the Rimal neighborhood (via @rasseed01)
  • Image appears to show smoke coming from the building struck on the May 11th, 2021 in Gaza's Rimal neighbourhood (via @48nnews)
  • Image showing building struck on the May 11th, 2021 strike in Gaza's Rimal neighbourhood (via @48nnews)
  • Image shows a person being loaded into an ambulance on a stretcher (via GAZA Now)
  • Translated caption reads: "The martyr, Dr. Al-Muhammed Abu Al-Ata And the heroic martyr, Sameh Al-Mamluk 💔 And the martyr, Dr. Kamal Qureiqa" (via @Camps202)
  • Translated caption reads: "#Photos | The raid launched by the occupation on a residential apartment in the Tower of the Unknown Soldier in the center of Gaza City, resulting in 3 martyrs and 8 injuries among the families" (via Shihab)
  • Translated caption reads: "#Photos | The raid launched by the occupation on a residential apartment in the Tower of the Unknown Soldier in the center of Gaza City, resulting in 3 martyrs and 8 injuries among the families" (via Shihab)
  • Translated caption reads: "#Photos | The raid launched by the occupation on a residential apartment in the Tower of the Unknown Soldier in the center of Gaza City, resulting in 3 martyrs and 8 injuries among the families" (via Shihab)
  • Translated caption reads: "#Photos | The raid launched by the occupation on a residential apartment in the Tower of the Unknown Soldier in the center of Gaza City, resulting in 3 martyrs and 8 injuries among the families" (via Shihab)
  • Translated caption reads: "#Photos | The raid launched by the occupation on a residential apartment in the Tower of the Unknown Soldier in the center of Gaza City, resulting in 3 martyrs and 8 injuries among the families" (via Shihab)
  • Image shows the Al-Jundi building which was hit in an Israeli airstrike on May 11th, 2021 (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Image shows the Al-Jundi building which was hit in an airstrike on May 11th, 2021. Three people died and there were up to eight injuries (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Translated caption reads: "# Pictures: Children and women panic, after the occupation bombed an apartment in Al-Rimal neighborhood in Gaza" (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Translated caption reads: "# Pictures: Children and women panic, after the occupation bombed an apartment in Al-Rimal neighborhood in Gaza" (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Image show children distressed. The caption indicates that this image comes from the scene of the May 11th, 2021 strike on the Al-Jundi building in Gaza (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Image reportedly from the scene of the May 11th, 2021 Israeli airstrike on the Al-Jundi building (image via @PalinfoAr)
  • Image reportedly showing Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa, who was killed in the May 11th, 2021 Israeli airstrike in Gaza's al-Rimal neighbourhood. Qureiqa was allegedly a member of the armed wing of Islamic Jihad (image via International Middle East Media Center)
  • Image reportedly showing Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, one of the three men identified as Islamic Jihad fighters killed in the May 11th, 2021 airstrike in central Gaza (image via International Middle East Media Center)
  • Image shared on Twitter seems to show the three men killed in the May 11th, 2021 strike in al-Rimal neigbourhood (image via @imshin)

Geolocation notes (2) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention an apartment being struck in the Al Jundi Al Majool Tower (عمارة الجندي المجهول في) in the Rimal (حي الرمال) neighbourhood of Gaza (غَزَّة). Analyzing visual material from sources, we have narrowed down the location to these exact coordinates: 31.51836, 34.447176.

  • Reports of the incident mention an apartment being struck in the Al Jundi Al Majool Tower (عمارة الجندي المجهول في) in the Rimal (حي الرمال) neighbourhood of Gaza (غَزَّة).

    Imagery:
    Planet

  • Tagged visual evidence from sources.

    Imagery:
    @48nnews

Israeli Military Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Israeli Military

Twitter post: Raw Aerial Footage: This is the moment that the IDF & Israel Security Agency carried out a targeted strike against Islamic Jihad commander, Samah Abed al-Mamluk & other senior members of his unit. They were among those responsible for hundreds of rockets fired at Israelis.

Press release:
The IDF struck a multi-story building used by the Hamas terror organization. The building housed the Hamas organization's military intelligence offices and other units

A short while ago, IDF fighter jets struck a multi-story building in the Rimal neighborhood, in the city of Gaza, used by the Hamas terror organization.
Inside the building were multiple military units used by Hamas, including headquarters used for military research and development, military intelligence offices and more. Prior to the strike, the IDF provided advance warning to civilians in the building and provided sufficient time for them to evacuate the site.

The Hamas terror organization is responsible for the events occurring in, and from, the Gaza Strip, and will bear the consequences of its actions against Israel and her citizens.

The IDF is prepared for a wide variety of scenarios while continuing to fulfill its mission to defend the citizens of Israel.

Media
from belligerent (1) [ collapse]

  • Israeli Defence Forces shared a video of the strike

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    7–8
  • 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.
  • Known attacker
    Israeli Military
  • Known target
    Palestinian Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    3

Sources (41) [ collapse]