Red Cross: Palestinian paramedics did not refuse to treat Israelis after terror attack

Rabbi Ya’akov Litman, 40, and his son Netanel, 18, were shot to death by Palestinian terrorists outside Otniel south of Hebron on November 13 while driving to a Shabbat pre-celebration wedding party.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
January 19, 2016 03:18
2 minute read.
A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance

A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance . (photo credit: ABBAS MOMANI / AFP)

 
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An internal probe conducted by the International Committee of the Red Cross found that its Palestinian affiliate did not refuse to treat two Israeli victims who were shot in a November terror attack after allegations emerged that the pair had died after not receiving proper medical care from the organization, AFP reported Monday.

Rabbi Ya’akov Litman, 40, and his son Netanel, 18, were shot to death by Palestinian terrorists outside Otniel south of Hebron on November 13 while driving to a Shabbat pre-celebration wedding party when a gunmen opened fire on their vehicle.

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Five other family members – Litman’s wife, three daughters aged 5, 9, and 11, and a 16-year-old son – suffered minor wounds in the attack.

Following the deadly incident, Litman's wife claimed that the Palestinian Red Crescent Society refused to treat her husband and son when they arrived at the scene, leading to accusations that the organization had failed to remain neutral, AFP added.

In addition, Dvir Litman, 16, who was lightly wounded by the Palestinian gunmen had complained about the ambulance's actions in an emergency call he made to Magen David Adom to report the attack.

"We're about a kilometer past Otniel. They shot at our car,” the told the MDA dispatcher as he asked for help.

"There's a Red Crescent ambulance here," he said. "There are two wounded. At least two. We were seven in the car. One of the wounded was in the middle of calling. We had a Red Crescent ambulance here. The Red Crescent left us. I don't know why,” Dvir said.



Israeli media reported the story widely, leading to a public rebuke from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who accused the PRCS of acting against ‘human and civilized norms.’

However, after concluding its investigation Monday, the ICRC said the Palestinian Red Crescent was not culpable of any wrongdoing, adding that the two men had died before the PRCS arrived at the scene.

"A two-person emergency medical team of the PRCS, responding to an emergency call, was the first team to arrive on the scene," the ICRC said in a statement.

"None of the survivors required emergency medical assistance and tragically there was nothing more the PRCS team could do for those who had been shot and killed."

It added that the PRCS had left only after Israeli emergency medical services arrived at the scene of the incident.

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.

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