What do we know about the Israeli operation against Al-Sifa Hospital in Gaza?

The Israeli army launched an operation on Monday against the largest hospital complex in the Gaza Strip. It resulted in the deaths of dozens of Palestinian militants and forced hundreds of civilians to flee the area.

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Displaced Palestinians leave an area near Al-Sifa Hospital in Gaza City on March 18, 2024.  (AFP)

Al-Sifa Hospital is still targeted by Israel. The largest hospital complex in the Gaza Strip, already attacked in November, was the scene of a new operation by the Israeli army on Monday, March 18.

The operation, which began in the early hours of the morning, continued throughout the day and continued on Tuesday. Its goal is to stop “High Level Hamas Terrorists”, Israeli officials reasoned, but the hospital also serves as a shelter for hundreds of civilians. On Tuesday, the Israeli military He said he killed “Over 50 Terrorists” and was arrested “About 180 suspects”.

Sending Israeli tanks and armored vehicles

l'“Target Function” It started on Monday morning. “The operation was based on information indicating that Hamas terrorists had used the hospital.”That said in the press release. “During the operation, the terrorists opened fire on the soldiers from the hospitalexplained another joint statement by the military and Israeli internal intelligence. The soldiers retaliated by firing.. This suggests that individuals were hit by shots.

At the site, witnesses confirmed to AFP “Flight Operations” In Al-Rimal district, where the hospital is located, people are said to have fallen “piece”. said the Gazans “More than 45 Israeli tanks and armored personnel carriers” had entered the neighborhood. Some have reported “fights” around the building. The Israeli army used loudspeakers to ask residents in the area to stay indoors as the drones fired. “On people in the streets near the hospital”According to witnesses cited by AFP.

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Israeli forces received “Instructions on the importance of exercising caution, as well as measures to be taken to avoid harm to patients, the public, and medical personnel”A spokesman for the Israeli army says. “Arabic-speaking people were brought on site to facilitate communication with patientsHe adds, Patients and medical staff are not required to leave.

Israel says it has received the weapons, which Hamas denies

Israeli army to justify this action Broadcast what it offers is an extract from a telephone exchange that took place “Last Days” Between the Israeli Coordination and Liaison Administration (CLA) and an official from the Ministry of Health in Gaza, its representative explained. “ready” Provide assistance if any “Terrorist Activities” Inside the hospital stop. She said she found it “Arms, Weapons and Military Equipment”The social network supports his statements with a video posted at the 'hospital.

“We confirm that the accounts are occupied [Israël] are falsePalestinian movements operating in the Gaza Strip responded in a joint statement. Hospitals are civil buildings dedicated to healthcare, which do not do anything contrary to their missions as defined by international humanitarian law..

Heavy human toll

Shortly after its operation began, the Israeli army asked civilians to leave “immediately” Al-Sifa Hospital area, a spokesperson wrote in a published message Social networking site. He recommended that people be evacuated “West”That means towards the sea, then take the road along the coast “South of the humanitarian zone of Al-Mawasi”, which is located in the south of the Gaza Strip, almost 30 kilometers away. Pamphlets with the same message were also thrown in the area.

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The Israeli military said Tuesday “destroyed” Over 40 “Terrorists” – 20 in the hospital premises and “More than 20 people in the vicinity” – and was arrested More than 200 are suspected terrorists. In particular, Israeli spokesman Faq al-Mabouh was killed “Chief of Special Operations of Hamas' Internal Security Organization”.

Hamas has blamed the Israeli military for its role “war crime”to get “Target Buildings” From Al-Shifa “Without concern for patients, medical teams and displaced people”when “Tens of thousands of people” were present during the attack. The Gaza Health Ministry said “Dozens dead and injured”, most of the public, without giving an exact figure. He later confirmed that one of the buildings caught fire “Air Raid” And regret “Dozens of Martyrs”.

WHO is “deeply concerned” by the situation at the site.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Monday “very concerned” Due to the condition of al-Sifa, that fight “Danger to the health of staff, patients and the public”. “Any fighting or demilitarization of this facility compromises the delivery of health services, ambulance access and life-saving supplies.”He wrote on the social network “Hospitals should never become battlefields”, he added. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also emphasized the establishment “Returned to minimal health care”. “Hospitals must be protected. Armistice!”He finished.

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