As Israeli withdraws from raid on Shifa Hospital, accounts from military and witnesses differ wildly

As Israeli withdraws from raid on Shifa Hospital, accounts from military and witnesses differ wildly post thumbnail image

JERUSALEM (AP) — On Monday, the Israeli army withdrew from its second devastating raid on Gaza’s largest hospital, Shifa, leaving it in ruins, with the partitions blown out and body blackened.

Regardless of the destruction, Israel claimed the battle as a victory in its battle in opposition to Hamas militants — and stated it hadn’t harmed civilians sheltering contained in the hospital.

However accounts from observers on the bottom and the World Well being Group inform a unique story.

They describe a terrifying two-week raid throughout which greater than a dozen civilians died and others had been brutally detained and trapped inside a facility with dwindling provides.

Right here’s what’s been stated concerning the raid.

HAVE CIVILIANS AND PATIENTS BEEN KILLED?

Israel stated its forces launched the shock assault March 18. After two weeks of battles inside Shifa, the army had killed 200 militants, spokesperson Daniel Hagari instructed reporters Monday. He maintained that no civilians sheltering contained in the hospital had been harmed and stated forces had supplied some 6,000 Palestinians sheltering there with meals, water, and drugs. The military deployed medical groups and Arabic audio system to speak and assist these inside earlier than evacuating everybody successfully, he stated.

However World Well being Group Director-Basic Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated Sunday that 21 sufferers contained in the hospital had died for the reason that begin of the siege. He stated 107 sufferers had been left contained in the hospital, together with younger kids and adults in crucial situation. He stated they lack “well being assist, medical care and provides.”

“Since yesterday just one bottle of water stays for each 15 folks. Contagious ailments are spreading because of extraordinarily unsanitary situations, and a scarcity of water,” he wrote on X.

The raid triggered days of combating for blocks round Shifa. Witnesses and journalists reported airstrikes, the shelling of houses and troops forcing residents to evacuate.

One resident, Mohammed Al-Sheikh, stated Israeli fighter jets had been “hitting something transferring within the space.”

One other, Bassel al-Hilou, stated seven relations had been killed in Israeli airstrikes.

“There was a bloodbath in my uncle’s home,” he stated Monday morning, as a whole lot returned to bury the lifeless, study the injury or seek for family members. “The scenario was indescribable.”

The Israeli army didn’t touch upon any civilian deaths close to or exterior the hospital.

WHO HAS ISRAEL ARRESTED AND DETAINED?

Israel stated it arrested 900 suspected militants. Of these, Israel stated, it has confirmed 500 are militants — a few of them high-level commanders and members of Hamas’ high political echelon.

However accounts from the Gaza Well being Ministry and Al Jazeera, a Qatari-based media community, stated medical employees and journalists had been amongst these detained and brutalized by Israeli forces.

A gaggle of reporters was handcuffed, blindfolded and stripped of their garments for 12 hours, a press release from Al Jazeera stated. Israel’s army didn’t reply to an AP request for touch upon the allegation.

WHAT HAPPENED AS THE RAID ENDED?

After killing and rounding up suspects contained in the hospital, army spokesman Hagari stated, Israeli forces retreated, exiting the compound on Monday. Two Israeli troopers had been killed and eight injured within the combating, he stated.

Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a militant group loosely linked to President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah motion, stated its fighters had focused Israeli forces with artillery through the operation and as forces withdrew.

Hamas additionally launched movies of militants getting ready shells that it stated had been directed towards Israeli forces within the hospital compound.

Hagari acknowledged that the combating had destroyed Shifa’s emergency ward and a significant hospital compound.

“Beside the success, there’s a tragedy,” he stated. “Due to the barricading, due to the bombs and explosives that we utilized in these buildings. That’s the tragedy of ruining the hospital, though we tried the whole lot we are able to to stop it.”

WHY DID ISRAEL TARGET SHIFA FOR A SECOND TIME?

Since Hamas militants stormed southern Israel on Oct. 7, Israel has made Shifa a central part of its blistering counteroffensive on Gaza.

Israel faces heavy scrutiny over its two main offensives on Shifa. Hospitals obtain particular protections below worldwide regulation. Israel says Shifa misplaced that safety as a result of it’s a central command and management middle for Hamas. Rights teams and worldwide legal professionals say proof to assist this declare has been defective and inadequate.

In justifying its first raid, Israel stated that beneath the hospital lay a posh community of tunnels, a central command middle for Hamas. Proof produced from that raid— caches of weapons, a tunnel resulting in small, rusty quarters that appeared out of use, and no scores of militants discovered — fell far in need of the declare.

Hagari stated Monday that the intelligence had been mistaken and that Israel had tipped off Hamas militants at Shifa by asserting its assault plans.

“They left there as a result of they knew we had been coming,” he stated. “And this time, we did one thing else.”

By doubling again to Shifa in mid-March, he stated, forces shocked militants who had regrouped inside.

He stated the army now believes militants operated primarily from the hospital wards themselves, not tunnels beneath.

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Observe AP’s warfare protection at https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war


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