Armed Raid on al-Maqassed Hospital, Report (2017)

Even if the police had suspicions of illegal conduct in the hopital permises, it had to coordinate its entrance with the managment so the entry to allow the safe activity of healthcare.

“When the team arrived at the elevator, the police officers tried to board it with us, although there was no room. I had my one hand on an injured patient’s heart and used the other to try to prevent the officer from entering the elevator. He tried to force his way in and said he would settle accounts with me. His colleague kicked me in the waist…”. This is a testimony by a medical staff member from al-Maqassed Hospital in East Jerusalem, referring to the raid by Israeli security forces on the hospital on Friday, July 21, at the time of the Haram al-Sharif (Temple Mount) incidents. It is one of several quoted in a report submitted to the Israeli Ministry of Health.

On Thursday, August 10, we called upon the ministry to examine the raid on the hospital, which operates under its supervision and license. Our testimonies indicate that the security forces conducted the search using physical and verbal violence against the medical staff, even as they were providing essential and urgent care for injured persons and other patients, and severely compromising the sterile conditions necessary for healthcare work.

In our letter to the ministry and attached report, we emphasized the unique status of hospitals and the special protections to which they are legally entitled. We also emphasized that even if the police had suspicions or evidence of illegal conduct in the hospital premises, it had to coordinate its entrance with the management, to prevent its presence on the premises from affecting medical activities. Note that in the meantime, evidence of violent protester activity from within the hospital have been made public, but these only reinforce the importance of coordination between the hospital management and the police with regard to the latter’s access to and conduct within the hospital.

This is not the first raid on al-Maqassed and other hospitals. However, the nature and scope of this raid are exceptional. The fact that despite the unprecedented scope of the damage in this recent case, this is not the first time we are protesting against hospital raids, proves beyond the shadow of doubt that nothing has been done in the Ministry of Health to protect the hospitals under its responsibility.

To read the report

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