Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISPT068

Incident date

May 15, 2021

Location

مخيم الشاطئ, ِAl Shati camp, The Gaza Strip

Geolocation

31.528524, 34.446008 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Exact location (via Airwars) level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Exact location (via Airwars)

Airwars assessment

Eight children and two women were killed in the early hours of Saturday 15 May when Israeli airstrikes struck a three-storey house in the Al Shati ‘Beach’ refugee camp, to the west of Gaza City in the Gaza Strip. Various sources have reported that two mothers, who were sisters-in-law, died in the strike, with each losing four children, who were all first cousins aged between five and 14.

Multiple sources report several missiles striking the house, which belonged to Alaa Abu Hattab around 1.30 a.m, killing 10 people: (1) Yamen Abu Hatab, M, aged 5 / 6 (2) Bilal Abu Hatab, M, aged 9/10 (3) Youssef Abu Hatab, M, aged 10/11 (4) Mariyam Abu Hatab, F, aged 7 / 8 (5) Yasmine Hassan Hatab, F, aged 30/31 (6) Maha Abu Hatab (Al Hadidi), 34/36 (7) Abdul Rahman Al Hadidi, M, aged 7/8 (8) Suhaib Al Hadidi, M, aged 12/14 (9) Yahya Al Hadidi, M, aged 11 (10) Osama Al Hadidi, M, aged 5/6.

Yasmine Hatab and Maha Al Hadidi were sisters-in-law and their children were first cousins; the Al Hadidi children were visiting their cousins to celebrate the Eid festival. According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), five of the children attended UNRWA schools in the Gaza Strip.

Omar Al Hadidi, aged 5 months, survived the strike which killed his mother and four siblings, and was found amidst the rubble in his dead mother’s arms. Al Jazeera reported that 15 others, including the child, were injured in the strikes. Images provided by Anadolu Agency show at least two injured children.

Alaa Abu Hattab, the owner of the house, gave HRW this eyewitness account of the strike: “I left my house on foot at about 1:30 a.m. to go to some of the local shops that were open late during the run-up to Eid [holiday concluding the holy month of Ramadan] to buy toys and snacks for the kids for the Eid festival and to buy some food, as we were hungry. Before I left the house there was no warning that anything would happen to our house. We didn’t receive a phone call and there was no drone strike that they sometimes do to warn people that they will target a building. At least that would have scared the kids and they would have fled the house in time.”

Abu Hattab said that about 15 minutes after he had left, he heard “a very loud explosion that shook the whole area. I ran back towards the smoke and saw it was my house. It was all rubble. I felt like everything was revolving around me. I was in shock and I fainted. When I regained consciousness, I saw rescue workers looking for bodies under the rubble and recovering body parts. The attack had shredded the bodies. Other parts remained under the rubble because they could not find them. There were no militants in or near my house and no rockets or rocket launchers there. I still don’t know why they bombed my house and killed my wife and children and my sister and her children. What sin did they commit?”

The IDF have admitted to carrying out the strike, commenting that it had “attacked a number of Hamas terror organization senior officials, in an apartment used as terror infrastructure in the area of the Al Shati refugee camp.” (The New York Times reports).

Avichay Adraee, the spokesman for the Israeli army, said in a tweet that the “defense army targeted a number of Hamas officials inside an apartment used as a terrorist building in the al-Shati refugee camp,” adding that the incident was still “under examination”.

An IDF spokesman also said in a statement reported by Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom: “During the night, the IDF attacked a number of senior members of the terrorist organization Hamas in an apartment that serves as a terrorist infrastructure in the area of ​​the Shati refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip…The IDF takes precautions to minimize possible harm to civilians during its military activity.”

However, multiple eyewitness sources confirmed that no advance warning had been given that the strike was about to take place.

The incident occured at approximately 1:30 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (11)

  • Omar Al Hadidi .4 years old male injured
  • Yamen Abu Hatab 5 years old male killed
  • Bilal Abu Hatab 9 years old male killed
  • Youssef Abu Hatab 10 years old male killed
  • Mariyam Abu Hatab 7 years old female killed
  • Yasmine Hassan Hatab 30 years old female Mother of Yamen, Bilal, Youssef, and Mariyam killed
  • Maha Abu Hatab (Al Hadidi) 34 years old female Mother of Abdul, Suhaib, Yahya, and Osama killed
  • Abdul Rahman Al Hadidi 7 years old male killed
  • Suhaib Al Hadidi 12 years old male killed
  • Yahya Al Hadidi 11 years old male killed
  • Osama Al Hadidi 5 years old male killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    10
  • (8 children2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    15
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Palestinian Forces

Sources (98) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (81) [ collapse]

  • Home in Al Shati camp destroyed by Israeli strikes on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Alaraby News)
  • Loved ones mourn children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • Without any warning or precedent, the Israeli occupation bombed a house in Al-Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City, at dawn on Saturday, carrying out a horrific massacre that is added to its record of massacres, which resulted in 10 martyrs, including 8 children and two women.
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Alnaba News)
  • At dawn today, Saturday, Israeli warplanes launched a series of violent raids on the Gaza Strip, which left 13 Palestinians dead, including 8 children and two women. Most of them fell in the Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City. Fifteen others were wounded, and rescue operations are still continuing.
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @EyadKandeel1)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @EyadKandeel1)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @EyadKandeel1)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @RassdNews)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @RassdNews)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @RassdNews)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and now in a leg cast following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @seedra29p)
  • Siblings of baby Omar Al Hadidi that were killed in strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @seedra29p)
  • Burial of the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @qudsn)
  • Burial of the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @qudsn)
  • Burial of the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @qudsn)
  • Father of baby Omar reunited with his child after his whole family is killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Al Jazeera)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Trt arabi)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @RassdNewsN)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @RassdNewsN)
  • Rescue crews search through the rubble for survivors following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @omali3131)
  • Father of baby Omar reunited with his child after his whole family is killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @Aboudwahidi)
  • Father of baby Omar reunited with his child after his whole family is killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @Aboudwahidi)
  • Abdul, Suhaib, Yahya, and Osama Al Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @Omar_Madaniah)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @alqudsnewspaper)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @alqudsnewspaper)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @alqudsnewspaper)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @alqudsnewspaper)
  • Youssef Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @Farid_Ahm7d)
  • Rubble in Al Shati camp following Israeli strikes on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @elhasani_yousef)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Sharef Suliman Al Farhta via Facebook)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Sharef Suliman Al Farhta via Facebook)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Very graphic images of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Sharef Suliman Al Farhta via Facebook)
  • Home of Hatab family, destroyed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Ahamd Al Ashi via Facebook)
  • Maryam, Yamen, Youssef, Bilal Al Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Mohannad Halil via Facebook)
  • Rescue crews search through the rubble for survivors following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @PalinfoAr)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Paltimes2015 via Facebook)
  • Image of baby Omar Al Hadidi, pulled from the rubble in critical condition and bring treated in a hospital following strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Paltimes2015 via Facebook)
  • The moment Muhammad al-Hadidi got acquainted with his wife and martyr children at Al-Shifa Hospital upon their arrival after the occupation bombed their home in Al-Shati Camp at dawn today
  • Image of the children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Shehab via Facebook)
  • Mariyam Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Mohannad Hilal via Facebook)
  • Bilal Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Mohannad Hilal via Facebook)
  • Yamen Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Mohannad Hilal via Facebook)
  • Abdul, Suhaib, Yahya, and Osama Al Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Al Shati camp via Facebook)
  • Abdul, Suhaib, Yahya, and Osama Al Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by Mr Abood via Facebook)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @activestills)
  • Rubble from Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @activestills)
  • Funeral for the 10 women and children killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by @activestills)
  • Kids injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Gazans injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Gazans injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • Gazans injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Gazans injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • Gazans injured in Israeli attack carried out to home of Palestinian Abu Khatab Familiy living in Al-Shati Camp in Gaza Strip, receive treatment at Shifa Hospital on May 15, 2021 (Image posted by Anadolu Agency)
  • Palestinians gather as rescuers search for victims at the site of a house destroyed by Israeli airstrikes at the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, May 15, 2021.Photo:Xinhua
  • Yahya Mohammad Sobhi al-Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by DCI Palestine)
  • Suheib al-Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by the New York Times)
  • Osama al-Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by the New York Times)
  • Abdul Rahman Al Hadidi, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by the New York Times)
  • Bilal Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by the New York Times)
  • Mariyam Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by the New York Times)
  • Youssef Abu Hatab, killed in Israeli strikes on Al Shati camp on May 15th, 2021. (Image posted by New York Times)
  • Alaa Abu Hatab and his 4-year-old daughter Maria were the only members of a family of 7 to survive after their house was destroyed by Israeli attacks [Getty]

Geolocation notes (4) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention a residential building being struck in the Al Shati camp (مخيم الشاطئ). Analyzing visual material from sources, we have narrowed down the location to these exact coordinates: 31.528524, 34.446008.

  • Reports of the incident mention a residential building being struck in the Al Shati camp (مخيم الشاطئ).

    Imagery:
    Planet

  • Distribution of tags in available satellite imagery.

    Imagery:
    Planet

  • Tagged visual material from sources.

    Imagery:
    @activestills

  • Tagged visual evidence in panoramic stitch of material from sources.

    Imagery:
    Al Araby

Israeli Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    Israeli Armed Forces
  • Israeli Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

Israeli Armed Forces

"During the night, the IDF attacked a number of senior members of the terrorist organization Hamas in an apartment that serves as a terrorist infrastructure in the area of ​​the Shati refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip...The IDF takes precautions to minimize possible harm to civilians during its military activity."

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    10
  • (8 children2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    15
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Known attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Palestinian Forces

Sources (98) [ collapse]