Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

ISPT105

Incident date

May 18, 2021

Location

الكرامه, غزة, Al Karama, Gaza, The Gaza Strip

Geolocation

31.548425, 34.464792 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

One civilian was seriously injured in an alleged Israeli airstrike on a house in the Al-Karama neighborhood in northern Gaza, on May 18 th 2021, according to local reports.

Ihab Dawahidi, 35, Director of Medical Laboratories at the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), was struck in the head by shrapnel that fractured his skull and critically damaged his brain, said the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights.

Jihad, Ihab’s brother, told Haaretz: “Midday on Tuesday, May 18, the Israeli army called the neighbors and informed them that their house was going to be bombarded and that they should leave. My family knew nothing. A few minutes later the army called again, this time phoning the neighbors from another house: ‘We see the Dawahidi family is still in their house. Tell them to leave because [we’re] about to bomb.’”

The neighbors notified the Dawahidi family, “we all immediately ran out of the house,” Raghda, Ihab’s wife, told Haaretz. Upon hearing of the impending strike, Ihab rushed home and he and his brothers watched the bombardment, reported Haaretz.

A drone reportedly fired a warning shot at the roof of a neighbor’s house and residents concluded one of the inhabitants may have been a member of a Palestinian militant group, reported Haaretz. At approximately 1:30 P.M., the house was struck by a second missile, said the source.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights reported that the strike hit a house belonging to the Saleh family.

“About 400 meters from the house, Ihab took cover among a few trees, but the shrapnel got him right there,” Jihad told Haaretz. “His brain was outside” Jihad continued “one of our brothers, Ahmed, who was next to him, instinctively covered the wound and the opening in Ihab’s head with his hand, put pressure on it and called an ambulance.” “On the way to the hospital in our friend’s car, Ihab’s heart stopped. His eyes rolled back in his head. Amjad (another of Ibah’s brothers) started mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. On the way, they met the ambulance that Amjad had called and its team continued the resuscitation”, Jihad told Haaretz. “They said Ihab was a shahid [martyr]. My brother argued and insisted it wasn’t so, and they finally operated on him; he was in an induced coma for 72 hours. They found a blood clot in his brain, and he was taken in for another operation.”

Mr. Dawahidi spent time on a ventilator in the intensive care unit of Al-Shifa Hospital before being transferred to Al-Makassed Hospital in Jerusalem via the Erez crossing, reported The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights. Haaretz said that an initial request for Mr. Dawahidi to be accompanied by his brother and his uncle was denied, “my permit came late Wednesday evening, and the next day, May 28, we left”, Jihad told Haaretz.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights accused Israeli authorities of procrastination, which they say, led to a serious deterioration in Mr. Dawahidi’s health. At the Erez crossing, Mr. Dawahidi’s body was checked over with a magnetic wand by an Israeli security officer before being granted access, reported Haaretz.

In an article published June 7 th 2021, Haaretz said Mr. Dawahidi had yet to regain feeling in the left side of his body and was communicating with family members by moving the fingers on his right hand.

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

  • Ihab Dawahidi 35 years old male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces

Sources (21) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • Ihab Dawahidi. Image curtesy of Adam Medical Lab
  • "Ihab Dawahidi with his children, before the war." Credit: Ragdah Yousef via Haaretz
  • Oh God, heal him, a cure that does not leave sickness. May God heal you, Abu Mahmoud, and return to your family and to us, a healthy hospital..

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the Al Karama (الكرامه) neighborhood in Jabalia (جباليا‎), for which the generic coordinates are: 31.548425, 34.464792. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

  • Reports of the incident mention the Al Karama (الكرامه) neighborhood in Jabalia (جباليا‎).

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

Israeli Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Israeli Armed Forces

Sources (21) [ collapse]