Over 25 hospitalized patients and medical staff in the Hebron Governmental Hospital in the southern occupied West Bank suffered varying degrees of wheezing, coughing, and choking on Sunday, August 30, after inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli occupation forces at Palestinian civilians nearby the hospital, according to the Palestinian news agency WAFA.
On Saturday night, Israeli occupation forces raided the Al-Arroub refugee camp, north of the city, and disseminated a statement threatening the local residents with collective punishment and mass arrests.
“Between 4:30 and 5:00 am, we were caught off guard by a tear gas canister which suddenly landed in our coronavirus and internal medicine wards,” hospital director Dr. Tariq al-Barbarawi said in a video statement, adding that the gas quickly spread throughout the hospital. Al-Barbarawi said that the patients who had begun choking as a result of inhaling the gas were in stable condition. However, even hours after the incident the odor of tear gas still clung to the walls and corridors of the hospital in Hebron.
A week ago, Israeli Border Police allegedly used tear gas inside Al-Makassed hospital in occupied East Jerusalem. The emergency unit room began filling up with gas. Israeli police claimed it was pepper spray fired by one of the suspects in their raid at the site. A video shot on the scene at al-Makassed hospital clearly showed a canister on the floor in the middle of a haze of gas.