Video Shows Undercover Israeli Commandos in Deadly West Bank Hospital Raid

Israel Palestine Hospital Hebron
A medic shows to journalists a bullet hole in a wall surrounded by blood stains of a Palestinian man who was killed by Israeli undercover forces during a raid at Al-Ahly hospital in the West Bank city of Hebron November 12, 2015. Reuters/Mussa Qawasma

Undercover Israeli commandos raided a hospital in the West Bank city of Hebron on Thursday, shooting one man dead during an attempt to arrest another Palestinian suspected of a stabbing attack, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

CCTV footage of the raid quickly spread online after it was posted to YouTube.

Abdullah al-Shalaldeh, 27, was shot five times and killed when approximately 20 members of the elite Israeli special forces unit, known as the Mistaravim, entered into the Al-Ahli Hospital to arrest his cousin Azzam al-Shalaldeh, 20, the ministry said in a statement.

The Israeli military said that Azzam was recovering at the hospital after being shot by Israeli forces following a stabbing attack in the West Bank on October 25. It also confirmed the hospital raid and the shooting but not the condition of Abdullah.

"Azzam Shalalda stabbed an Israeli in the chest in Gush Etzion, wounding him severely," the Israeli military said in a statement. "During his escape, the assailant was shot and injured by his victim. Following his wounds Shalalda made his way to the Al-Ahli Hospital in Hebron. His family are known Hamas operatives."

Israeli forces extracted Azzam from the hospital and transferred him to an unnamed Israeli medical facility.

Jehad Shawar, the director of the hospital, told The Times of Israel that the commandos arrived at the hospital in two vans at 3 a.m. local time. They entered through the front of the facility and pretended to be bringing a pregnant woman to the hospital.

"I don't know if it was a woman or a man, but it certainly seemed like a scene that we see in the early hours of the morning with women who come to give birth," he said. "They pushed the wheelchair through the corridor and at one point and they pulled out a weapon concealed inside it."

He added: "They went up to the third floor and entered the surgical ward. There they arrested the wounded man and took him out in the same wheelchair."

Shawar told Palestine Radio that Israeli forces killed Abdullah when he left the bathroom in Azzam's hospital room. However, the Israeli military says that Abdullah attempted to attack forces who entered the room.

Video footage of the incident appeared on YouTube and the purported Israeli forces are shown walking down the corridor of the hospital pointing their guns before moving down the corridor with a person, believed to be Azzam, in a wheelchair.

The Mistaravim unit trains its members to dress and act as Arabs so they can act covertly to detain Palestinian suspects in Arab-only areas of the West Bank.

Such operations are not routinely disclosed by Israeli authorities unless they take place in public areas. In one incident caught on camera in October, members of the unit disguised as Palestinian stone-throwers before turning on a group of Palestinians at a West Bank checkpoint before detaining and beating one protester.