Israel has confirmed that it bombed a convoy of ambulances outside Al-Shifa hospital, the largest hospital in Gaza.
The strike on Friday Nov. 3 killed at least 15 people and injured 60 others, the Palestinian Red Crescent said.
Palestinian officials said the five ambulances were carrying critically injured patients to the Rafah border crossing with Egypt to be evacuated.
Four of the ambulances belonged to the Gaza Health Ministry while another one belonged to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS), Al Jazeera reported.
“We informed the Red Cross and the Red Crescent (PRCS), we informed the whole world, that those victims were lined up in those ambulances,” the spokesperson for the Gaza Health Ministry’s said. “This was a medical convoy.”
PRCS said that the convoy had left the hospital at around 4:05pm but was forced to turn back due to rocks and heavy shelling on Al-Rashid road on the way to the border.
On the way back, one of the ambulances belonging to the health ministry was “directly targeted” by an Israeli airstrike, which injured the patients and ambulance crew inside, PRCS said.
It said the other ambulances continued back towards Al-Shifa hospital, but the ambulance belonging to the Red Crescent was then struck by an Israeli missile just two meters from the entrance of the hospital.
Israel confirmed it had targeted an ambulance, claiming that the ambulance was being used by Hamas to transport fighters and weapons.
“The deliberate targeting of medical teams constitutes a grave violation of the Geneva Conventions, a war crime”, the PCRS said in a statement.
At least 9,488 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli airstrikes in Gaza since Oct. 7, when Israel declared war on Hamas after it launched a surprise attack on Israel and killed 1,400 Israelis.