A Tel Aviv hospital in the occupied West Bank has announced a plan to cancel funeral and burial appointments of Palestinian patients in an attempt to save the lives of Israeli soldiers.
The hospital, where a number of Israeli civilians have died in the past year, said it will be using a software called Sonora Quest to cancel the appointments of patients who are “not medically needed,” a move that is intended to save lives.
It is the latest in a series of cases in which Israeli soldiers have used the app to inform them of their death, often after a death sentence has been handed down.
In a statement on Wednesday, Sonora Quotient, which is operated by the Israeli Civil Administration, said its “solution is to keep the patient alive as long as possible,” and that it would continue to “monitor the situation.”
But it did not elaborate on how it will use the new technology.
Sonora Quest, which was introduced by Tel Aviv’s Shin Bet security service in the early 2000s, has been criticized by human rights groups, which say it is used to inform soldiers about suspected terrorists or criminals and to facilitate killings.
In February, the Palestinian Ministry of Information accused Sonora of facilitating the assassination of a Hamas member.
The government has said Sonora has never been used for assassinations.
In an emailed statement to The Associated Press on Thursday, the ministry said Sonoa Quest has “never been used to identify individuals, and does not violate the laws of war.”
But in March, an AP reporter visited a Sonora quilt factory and found a large number of Palestinian men working on the quilts, whose work is overseen by an Israeli security official.
The AP later discovered that the men had been using Sonora to inform their relatives of their deaths, though the ministry did not name them.
Sonola Quest was not immediately available for comment.
In March, a Palestinian man who was reportedly killed in a gunfight with Israeli soldiers was found dead on the roof of a house in the West Bank.
The IDF has not confirmed the death of the man, who was not an employee of the company that operates Sonora.
The ministry said its decision to halt the funerals of Palestinians has been made following a call from the Israeli security chief for the Ministry of Defense to stop the funerality of Palestinians.
A military official told the AP that the decision was based on the “toxic atmosphere” in the area.
The spokesman did not say whether the government is planning to cancel funerals for Palestinian soldiers.
Sonoras death, in the words of the Israeli Ministry of Interior, was a “disaster” for the Israeli public.