Mar 7, 2002

Two Ambulance Medics Killed, 3 Injured - Tulkarem

Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) Urgent Appeal for Protection of
Medical Staff and Ambulances


The Israeli army shot and killed two ambulance medics today in Tulkarem.
Mr. Kamal Salem works for UN and was shot in the back while responding to a
call in a UN ambulance, the PRCS medic Mr. Ibrahim Assad was killed in his
ambulance and 3 other emergency medical technicians were injured with live
ammunition.

The events that transpired during the evening of March 7th in Tulkarem:

1.  At 6:30 pm three PRCS ambulances and one UN ambulance responded
(from their station in central Tulkarem) to calls for assistance of injured
personnel and obtaining necessary clearance through ICRC and Israeli army
channels.
2.  All ambulances had sirens and lights on.
3.  Within minutes, the army shot and fired at two PRCS ambulances
approximately 500 m next to their station killing one (Mr. Ibrahim Assad)
and injuring 2 medics (Ms. Safiyah Balbisi, Mr. Mahmoud Bahjawi).  Reports
indicate that Mr. Assad was shot twice, one in the ambulance (in the hand),
and once in the head as he exited the vehicle.
4.  The UN ambulance came under gunfire and UN medic/nurse Mr. Kamal
Salem was shot and killed in the passenger side of a UN ambulance.
5.  A few minutes later, the army shot and hit Dr. Nabhan Jallad in the
leg inside the ambulance station.

PRCS calls for the intervention of all Red Cross/Crescent societies,
humanitarian agencies and governments:

1.  To provide international protection for medical teams through on the
ground presence throughout the West Bank and Gaza
2.  To demand the prosecution of Israeli army commanders and soldiers
responsible for these atrocities as war criminals

On Mar 4th Dr. Khalil Sulieman, head of EMS station in Jenin, was killed by
Israeli troops and an additional 5 medics injured, 3 with severe burns.  The
facts around the incident show that Dr. Khalil and his team were hit with a
grenade launched by an Israeli soldier at their ambulance as it stopped in
the Jenin refugee camp to evacuate a 9-year-old girl.  Israeli troops fired
at rescue and medical workers thus preventing them from reaching the burning
medics.

To-date 3 PRCS medical staff have been killed, and 140 injured.  PRCS
remains committed to provide emergency medical care to all in need.

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PRCS Press Conference March 8, 11 am at PRCS-HQ in Al-Bireh
For further Info, please call Younis Al-Khatib or Dr. Hossam Sharkawi  at
240-6515 or email  PressOffice@PalestineRcs.org