Israeli helicopter hits participants of Nova festival; Hamas didn't plan to attack: Report

Yasmine Farag , Sunday 19 Nov 2023

An Israeli security assessment admitted that the Israeli army in fact targeted its own civilians participating in the Nova music festival during Hamas' “Al-Aqsa Flood” operation, refuting another Israeli allegation of what had happened and still happening on the ground in Gaza.

FILE- Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari speaks to the press from The Kirya, which houses the Israeli Ministry of Defence in Tel Aviv on October 18, 2023. AFP


From the big lie about the “beheaded babies,” to the misfired rocket targeting Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital, to the alleged Hamas command centre under Al-Shifa Hospital, many Israeli allegations are being deconstructed one by one.

The growing assessment in Israel's security establishment is that Hamas did not have advance knowledge about the Nova festival held next to the Re’im settlement and decided to target the party spontaneously, according to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

The investigation also indicated that an Israeli army combat helicopter, which arrived at the scene from the Ramat David Airbase and fired at Hamas members there, apparently also hit some of the festival participants, according to a police source.

No further details were provided, Haaretz reported.

Some senior Israeli security officials estimated that Hamas found out about the Nova festival through drones or from the persons flying with parachutes and directed its fighters to the location using their comms system.

In addition to this, according to police sources, the party was originally planned for Thursday and Friday, with an extra day on Saturday added only on Tuesday of that week, at the organizers’ request. The last-minute change strengthens the assessment that Hamas did not know about the event.

“The event was attended, according to our estimate, by some 4,400 people, the large majority of whom managed to flee following the decision to disperse the event made four minutes after the rocket attack,” a senior police source said.

The assessment was based on interrogations and police investigation of the incident, among other things, which revealed that Hamas fighters intended to infiltrate Re’im and other settlements near the Gaza border.

Furthermore, Israeli police reviewed the death toll of the festival to 360, from about 260, according to a new report. The causalities included some 17 police officers.


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