Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISPT023

Incident date

May 12, 2021

Location

حي الأمل, Al Amal neighborhood, the Gaza Strip

Geolocation

31.354810, 34.297943 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Between two and three civilians, including up to three woman, were killed and between three and eight others, including a child, were wounded in alleged Israeli artillery shelling and/or airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021.

Initial reports from @Alaqsavoice_Brk stated that “a martyr rose in Khan Yunis from the bombing of an apartment in the Al-Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis”. Later reports from @SafaPs added that “the body of a second female martyr was pulled out from the bombed house of the Arafa family in the Al-Amal neighborhood, west of Khan Yunis governorate, in the southern Gaza Strip” and @AlGhadTV additionally reported “the body of a third martyr was recovered in the bombing of a house in Al-Amal”.

A tweet from @alkofiyatv named Hadeel Arafa as being killed in the strikes and noted that her body “arrived at Nasser Hospital after she was pulled out from under the rubble”. According to a post by Khan Younus Today, Hadeel was planning her wedding to be held after Eid and had planned out all of the details, including the dress she was going to wear. Thehir Hussein added on Facebook that she had just gotten engaged two weeks ago. Hadeel was killed alongside her mother, Miami Arafa.

Al Mezan included details that “at 2:30pm on the same day, Israeli air forces fired multiple missiles onto a 125-square-meter four-story house owned by Mahmoud Arafah and located in the Al-Amal neighborhood in Khan Younis. The attack led to the death of Miami Abdallah Mousa Arafah, 49, and her daughter Hadeel Khaled Mahmoud Arafah, 28. Three other residents of the house, one of them a child, were injured, while the house and nearby buildings were significantly damaged.”

Al Jazeera reported that “Bayan AbuSultan, 25, said her cousin Hadeel Arafa, 27, and her 50-year-old aunt, Miami, a mother of four, were killed while preparing for Eid in their house in the Amal neighbourhood”.

According to Al Jazeera, at the time of the strikes, “there was no prior warning of an imminent strike as Miami’s brother was on a call with her a few minutes before the bombing. AbuSultan said that she and Hadeel had been planning to go shopping together after Ramadan as she was supposed to get married a few days after Eid al-Fitr. The last that she had heard from her cousin was when she shared her Facebook status, praying for those killed. “Little did she know that soon after we’ll be wishing her exactly the same,” AbuSultan said. “I shiver every time I think of how terrified they were. I hope they didn’t feel anything.”

@ShehabAgency also identified “injuries by Israeli shelling targeted an apartment in Al-Amal neighborhood” and later added that “8 injuries were transported from the scene”.

Sources were conflicted as to whether the damage was inflicted by artillery shells or airstrikes. However, all of the sources that attributed responsibility for the incident blamed Israel.

An IDF statement on 12th May stated: “A short while ago, the IDF struck an additional Hamas internal security apparatus building, in Khan Yunis, used for counterintelligence.” It is unclear at this time if this event was included in this statement.

The incident occured in the afternoon.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (2–3 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    3–8
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Military

Sources (27) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (11) [ collapse]

  • Funeral for two members of the Arafa family killed in alleged Israeli bombing of Al-Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @AbuZiad486)
  • Funeral for two members of the Arafa family killed in alleged Israeli bombing of Al-Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @AbuZiad486)
  • The body of Hadeel Arafa arrived at Nasser Hospital after she was pulled out from under the rubble following airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @alkofiyatv)
  • The body of Hadeel Arafa arrived at Nasser Hospital after she was pulled out from under the rubble following airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @alkofiyatv)
  • The body of Hadeel Arafa arrived at Nasser Hospital after she was pulled out from under the rubble following airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @alkofiyatv)
  • The body of Hadeel Arafa arrived at Nasser Hospital after she was pulled out from under the rubble following airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @alkofiyatv)
  • Damage to the building that was struck by alleged Israeli shelling on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by Khan Younus Today via Facebook)
  • Wedding dress that belonged to Hadeel Arafa , who was killed in airstrikes on the Al Amal neighborhood in Khan Yunis on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by @iiio___oiiii)
  • Casualties and the destruction caused by shelling on the Al Amal neighborhood on May 12, 2021. (Image posted by Doaa Anna via Facebook)
  • #watched | The young woman Hadeel Arafa, 27, from Gaza, was preparing to be a bride, but the occupation planes ended everything
  • "A Palestinian police officer inspects a damaged building hit by an Israeli air strike in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis, on May 12, 2021. The second day of fighting between Israel and the Hamas militant group ruling the Gaza Strip left massive damage in Gaza and an increasing number of casualties on both sides on Wednesday." (Image posted by Xinhua)

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the neighbourhood of Al Amal (حي الأمل), for which the generic coordinates are: 31.354810, 34.297943. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

  • Reports of the incident mention the neighbourhood of Al Amal (حي الأمل).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

Israeli Military Assessment:

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

Original strike reports

Israeli Military

[23:59, 5/12/2021] IDF News Desk: IDF:

A short while ago, the IDF struck an additional Hamas internal security apparatus building, in Khan Yunis, used for counterintelligence.

The IDF is continuing to strike terror targets in the Gaza Strip.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (2–3 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    3–8
  • 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.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Military

Sources (27) [ collapse]