Israel says Gazan gunman was nurse for Doctors Without Borders
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Israel says Gazan gunman was nurse for Doctors Without Borders

Military liaison asks for clarification from aid group over connection to Hani al-Majdalawi, killed Monday while firing at troops on border; organization says it is investigating

illustrative: A Palestinian doctor exits an operating theater in the Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Tuesday, January 27, 2009. (Illustrative photo: AP/Anja Niedringhaus)
illustrative: A Palestinian doctor exits an operating theater in the Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Tuesday, January 27, 2009. (Illustrative photo: AP/Anja Niedringhaus)

A Gazan gunman killed by Israeli forces during a border clash this week worked for Doctors Without Borders, the military said Thursday.

COGAT, the Defense Ministry body that coordinates government activities with the Palestinians, said it was seeking an explanation from the international aid group.

According to Israel, Hani al-Majdalawi, who was killed Monday in a firefight with Israel Defense Forces troops while trying to sneak across the Gaza border fence, had been a nurse with the organization.

A statement from COGAT said he had opened fire towards military forces with a rifle and threw an explosive device at troops. It cited his brother saying he had used his own money to purchase the gun, indicating he had acted independently.

No soldiers were injured in the incident.

In this photograph taken on November 10, 2015, a burnt-out vehicle of the Doctors Without Borders medical charity is seen inside the premises of the group’s hospital in Afghanistan’s northern Kunduz, bombed by US troops in the previous month. (AFP Photo/Najim Rahim)

“He who takes part in saving lives should assist in humanitarian activities in the Gaza Strip, and should not take part in terrorism,” COGAT head Maj. Gen. Kamil Abu Rokon said in the statement.

The medical charity said Friday it was investigating as it confirmed the death of an employee.

“Doctors Without Borders confirms that one of its employees, Hani Mohammed al-Majdalawi, was killed in Gaza on Monday, August 20, 2018,” the organization said in a statement.

It said it “is working to verify and understand the circumstances regarding this extremely serious incident, and is not able to comment further at this stage.”

The group, also known by its French name Medecins Sans Frontieres, says it runs three burn and trauma centers in Gaza.

COGAT said it had reached out “for clarification on the matter.”

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