Palestinians accuse Israel of ‘poisoning’ father of Dizengoff terrorist

Similar conspiracy theories were spread after the death of PLO leader Yasser Arafat, although a French investigation found no evidence of foul play.

 Father of Palestinian gunman Raed Hazem who opened fire in a Tel Aviv bar and killed two Israelis, reacts after his son was killed by Israeli forces, in Jenin in the Israeli-occupied West Bank April 8, 2022 (photo credit: MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS)
Father of Palestinian gunman Raed Hazem who opened fire in a Tel Aviv bar and killed two Israelis, reacts after his son was killed by Israeli forces, in Jenin in the Israeli-occupied West Bank April 8, 2022
(photo credit: MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS)

The family of Fathi Hazem, the father of the terrorist who carried out a deadly shooting attack in Tel Aviv in April, has accused Israel of "poisoning" him after his health condition deteriorated on Sunday, according to Palestinian media.

Palestine Today TV claimed that "private family sources" had told the channel that Hazem had been transferred to Istishari Hospital in Ramallah and that he was suffering from swelling, tumors and blood poisoning. The channel claimed that Hazem's family was accusing Israel of "transmitting an unknown virus" to Hazem's body.

The Hamas-affiliated SAFA news agency cited Amin Hazem, Fathi's brother, as also blaming Israel for the deterioration in his condition, claiming that doctors were unable to identify what it was.

The Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Mayadeen TV also accused Israel of "causing the poisoning" of Hazem on Sunday.

Fathi Hazem had recently been released from the hospital in Ramallah and returned to Jenin. "There are vigorous efforts being made to transfer him to Jordan," said Hazem's brother to SAFA.

 General view of the Istishari hospital where Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas went in for medical check up, in Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank May 20, 2018. (credit: MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS) General view of the Istishari hospital where Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas went in for medical check up, in Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank May 20, 2018. (credit: MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS)

Hazem has appeared repeatedly in Palestinian media and videos shared on social media, encouraging terrorist attacks against Israelis. Hazem also served as a senior officer with the PA’s National Security Force. His son, Ra’ad, shot and killed three Israeli civilians in a terrorist attack on Tel Aviv's Dizengoff Street in April.

Abd al-Rahman Hazem, Ra'ad's brother, was killed during clashes with Israeli forces in Jenin's refugee camp in September.

Palestinians spread conspiracy theories of poisoning after Arafat's death

Similar conspiracy theories concerning Israeli plans to poison Palestinian individuals were spread around the death of PLO leader Yasser Arafat in 2004, with a number of Palestinian officials claiming that Arafat was poisoned either by Israel or political opponents.

A French investigation in 2015 found that there was no foul play in Arafat's death.

The latest accusation against Israel comes just days after Palestinian villagers accused Israel of using cows "recruited and trained" to act as spies.

"These are recruited and trained cattle," Palestinian villager Rushd Morrar told the official Palestinian Authority daily news outlet Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, according to Palestinian Media Watch. "On the neck of each cow, they hang a medallion with an eavesdropping and recording device on it and sometimes cameras, in order to monitor every detail in Khirbet Yanun, large and small."