Israeli troops have stormed Gaza’s biggest hospital with tanks after days of fighting. The Al Shifa hospital was hit at least four times over the weekend, with as many as ‘100 troops’ now raiding the building in the early hours of this morning (Wednesday, November 15).
In a statement posted on social media, the Israel Defense Forces said it had launched “a precise and targeted operation against Hamas in a specified area in the Shifa Hospital”. It remained unclear how many troops were involved in the assault or what their immediate objective was.
They have previously claimed the hospital is being used as a fortress for Hamas terrorists to store weapons.
Khader Zaanoun, an eyewitness inside Al-Shifa hospital, told the BBC: “I saw six tanks inside the hospital and more than a hundred commandos soldiers, they entered the main emergency department, some of the soldiers were masked and screamed in Arabic ‘don’t move don’t move’.”
For all the latest updates on the conflict, follow our live blog below.
IDF confirms forces are operating inside the hospital
An IDF spokesperson has said Israeli forces are currently operating inside the hospital.
In a statement, spokesperson Daniel Hagari said: “IDF forces are operating at this time in a targeted manner at Shifa Hospital.
“The activity takes place in a defined complex for which there is intelligence information indicating terrorist activity by the terrorist organisation Hamas and in accordance with an operational need.”
Hamas claims hospital raid is ‘crime against humanity’
Hamas has reportedly claimed that the hospital raid is a “crime against humanity” and a “war crime”.
The BBC reported that their media office said 9,000 patients were inside the hospital when it was raided last night. In an earlier statement, they claimed that the USA and Joe Biden were behind the attack. Both Israel and the USA claim that Hamas has a base underneath the Al-Shifa hospital.
Babies taken off incubators as “dire” conditions laid bare
The “dire” conditions inside Al Shifa have been laid bare by aid workers.
It’s been described as a ‘mass grave’ with dead bodies having to be removed from beds into another building on the complex to avoid a public health disaster.
The hospital is also reportedly running out of fuel, making it impossible to care for patients.
Three premature babies have died after 36 were taken off incubators due to power cuts.
Hospital raid was ‘precise and targeted’ operation against Hamas
The raid on the Al Shifa hospital in Gaza was a “precise and targeted operations against Hamas in a specified area in Al-Shifa Hospital, based on intelligence information,” the Israeli military has said.
It comes after days of fighting raging outside with the hospital struck at least four times.
One eyewitness said Israeli soldiers and tanks had entered the emergency department.
‘9,000’ civilians and medical staff inside hospital during raid
Hamas has called Israel’s raid on Gaza’s Al-Shifa hospital a “war crime”, a “moral crime” and a “crime against humanity”.
The Hamas government’s media office said 9,000 patients, medical staff and displaced civilians were at the hospital when the raid happened under the cover of night.
In a video on X, formerly Twitter, by the Palestinian Information Center, Hamas leader Izzat al-Rishq said Israel attacked a civilian facility, not a military installation.
Welcome to our live blog where we will be bringing you all the latest on the Israel-Hamas conflict.
In the early hours of this morning, as many as 100 Israeli troops entered the Al Shifa hospital in Gaza.
The hospital has been at the centre of attack over the last few days, with the IDF claiming Hamas terrorists use it as a base to store weapons.
More to follow.
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