Two Israeli officers were killed by mistake by one of their own troops during a security sweep near their base in the occupied West Bank.
On Thursday, the army’s statement provided scant specifics about the “friendly fire” incident in the Jordan Valley on Wednesday night, which Israeli media reported involved the Oz Brigade’s elite commando Egoz Unit.
“The officers were wrongly identified and killed by IDF fire,” according to the statement. Major Ofek Aharon, 28, and Major Itamar Elharar, 26, were recognised and their families were notified.
“A soldier in the unit mistaken their activities for a Palestinian attack, and the two officers were murdered as a result of [his] shooting,” according to a military spokesman on Kan public radio.
According to the Jerusalem Post, the officers had just ended a military training in the Nabi Musa base’s firing zone and were patrolling when they noticed a suspicious person. According to the report, they began the procedure for arresting the man, which included shooting in the air.
The officers were then fired at by another soldier who mistook them for potential attackers.
“This isn’t anything that happened during the drill.” “During the drill, our troops did not fire on our troops,” stated Brigadier-General Ofer Winter, commander of the Central Command’s 98th Division.
The statement continued, “The IDF sends its profound condolences to the deceased families and will continue to support them.”
On Twitter, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett expressed sadness over the event.
“The two commanders had devoted their best years to ensuring Israel’s security and defending our country. He remarked, “The entire people of Israel mourns for them.”
“Unfortunately, there is nothing that can restore the great loss to the families, friends, and brothers-in-arms,” Defence Minister Benny Gantz said in a statement.
“The IDF is conducting a thorough investigation, and we will do all possible to ensure that such a calamity does not occur again,” Gantz stated.
In a 1967 conflict, Israel occupied the West Bank. Palestinians want to form a state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with the capital in occupied East Jerusalem.