Israel besieges two more Gaza hospitals, demands evacuations, Palestinians say

Mar25,2024



Cairo: Israeli forces surrounded two more Gaza Hospital The Palestinian Red Crescent said medical teams were driven off Sunday amid heavy gunfire, and Israel said it had captured 480 militants in ongoing clashes at Gaza's main Al Shifa hospital.
Israel says hospitals in the Palestinian territory, where war has been going on for more than five months, are used as bases by Hamas militants. It has released videos and photos supporting the claim.
Hamas and medical staff deny the allegations.
The Palestinian Red Crescent said one of its staff was killed israeli tank They were suddenly pushed back into areas around al-Amal and Nasser hospitals in the southern city of Khan Yunis amid heavy bombardment and shelling.
“Israeli forces began conducting operations around al-Amal following accurate intelligence… which indicated that terrorists were using civilian infrastructure to conduct terrorist activities in the area of ​​al-Amal,” the military said. “
Israeli armored forces sealed off al-Amal hospital and conducted an extensive bulldozing campaign in the area around it, the Red Crescent said in a statement.
“All our teams are at extreme risk at this time and are completely inactive,” it said.
The Red Crescent said Israeli forces are now demanding the complete evacuation of staff, patients and displaced people from the Al Amal compound and are throwing smoke bombs into the area to drive out its occupiers.
The Red Crescent said in a later update that a displaced Palestinian died inside the hospital compound after being hit in the head by Israeli gunfire.
The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said dozens of patients and medical staff had been detained by Israeli forces in Al Shifa in Gaza City, north of the enclave, which has been under Israeli control for a week.
The Hamas-run government media office said Israeli forces had killed five Palestinian doctors during their seven-day attack on al-Shifa.
The Israeli military did not immediately respond to a request for comment on that report. It had earlier said it had killed more than 170 gunmen in the attack, with the Palestinian Health Ministry saying it had also killed five patients.
Al Shifa is one of the few health facilities that is even partially operational in northern Gaza, and – like the others – is also housing some of the approximately 2 million civilians displaced by the war – more than 80% of Gaza's population. Was.
“At the moment, Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists are barricading themselves inside the wards of Shifa hospital,” said Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, an Israeli military spokesman.
Hagari said Hamas gunmen were firing at soldiers from inside the hospital's emergency and maternity wards, and were also firing mortars at soldiers in the hospital, causing damage.
The Hamas-run government media office said they “categorically deny this.”
Ismail al-Thawbata, director of the media office, said, “How can they make this claim when their soldiers roam freely and have fun inside the compound, interrogating displaced persons, patients and the wounded.”
Seven killed in airstrike in Rafah
Reuters has been unable to access disputed hospital areas of Gaza and verify accounts from both sides.
Residents of Khan Yunis said Israeli forces had also advanced and formed a cordon around Nasser Hospital in the west of the town, under the cover of heavy air and ground fire.
Health officials said seven people were killed in an Israeli airstrike on a house in Rafah, Gaza's southernmost city on the border with Egypt, which has become the last refuge for half of Gaza's population.
At least 32,226 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli air and ground attacks on the densely populated coastal region since October 7, the health ministry said in an update on Sunday, including 84 in the past 24 hours and 74,518 were wounded.
Israel launched the offensive after Hamas-led Islamist militants attacked its south on October 7, killing 1,200 people and taking 253 hostages back into Gaza, according to Israeli data.
US-backed mediation by Qatar and Egypt has so far failed to ensure a Hamas-Israel ceasefire, release of prisoners and uninterrupted aid to Gaza civilians facing famine, with each side sticking to key demands.
Hamas wants any ceasefire agreement to include an Israeli commitment to end the war and withdraw troops from Gaza. Israel rejects this, saying it will continue fighting until Hamas is eliminated as a political and military force.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres described the backlog of aid destined for Gaza as a moral outrage during a visit to the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing on Saturday.
Speaking in Cairo on Sunday, Guterres said the only effective and efficient way to deliver heavy goods to meet Gaza's humanitarian needs is by road.
The United States and other countries have tried to use airdrops and ships to deliver aid, but UN aid officials say deliveries can only be scaled up by land, blaming Israel for obstructing relief. Accusations made, which Israel denies.



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