Druze Israelis stop ambulance carrying wounded Syrians to local hospitals

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — An Israel Defense Forces ambulance carrying wounded Syrians to local hospitals was attacked by Druze residents of Israel.

The Israeli Druze asked to check whether the wounded being carried by the ambulance on Monday were rebel members, who have been locked in a civil war with Syrian government forces for more than 4 years, according to Israeli media reports.

The residents of the Druze village of Hurfish blocked the path of the ambulance and threw stones at the ambulance, which managed to evade the crowd. The ambulance took its injured to the hospital in Nahariyah in the northern Galilee.

Israel treats wounded from the civil war in the field and at local hospitals regardless of what side they are fighting for. More than 1,600 wounded Syrians have been treated in Israeli hospitals during the civil war, according to the IDF.

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The rebels have threatened the lives of Druze residents of Syria. Druze soldiers in the IDF have threatened to take off their uniforms over the conflict, Haaretz reported Monday.

Last week, thousands of Israeli Druze demonstrated on behalf of their Syrian counterparts, 20 of whom were murdered by ISIS the previous week. The Israeli Druze community announced that it had collected $2.6 million for the Syrian Druze to purchase weapons and urged the Israeli government to offer additional assistance.

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