The conflict between Israel and Hamas: Seriously ill patients stuck in ‘zone of death’ Gaza hospital as attacks continue

The most recent updates regarding the Israel-Hamas conflict.

ADVERTISEMENTA team from the United Nations reported that approximately 291 patients remain at Gaza’s biggest hospital, following the evacuation of all others by Israeli forces. Those who are still there include 32 critically ill infants, patients with severe infected wounds, and individuals with spinal injuries rendering them immobile. The World Health Organisation, leading the mission, stated that the team was able to inspect Shifa Hospital for an hour after around 2,500 displaced people, mobile patients, and medical staff departed from the expansive compound on Saturday morning. It was added that 25 medical staff and the patients remained. The agency described Shifa as a ‘zone of death’ and reported that the patients and health staff they spoke with expressed fear for their safety and health, pleading for evacuation. It was mentioned that more teams will make efforts to reach Shifa in the upcoming days for the purpose of evacuating patients to the overwhelmed hospitals in southern Gaza. Israel has long claimed that Hamas has a substantial command center within Shifa. It has presented the hospital as a primary target in its mission to end the rule of militants in Gaza, following their extensive attack on southern Israel six weeks ago that sparked the conflict. Hamas and the hospital staff refute these allegations. Israeli troops stationed at the hospital searching its grounds claim to have discovered firearms and other weapons, and showed journalists the entrance to a tunnel shaft. The mass departure on Saturday was depicted by Israel as voluntary, whereas the WHO stated that the military had issued evacuation orders, and some of those who left described it as a compelled exodus. Mahmoud Abu Auf, who left the crowded hospital with his family, stated in a phone conversation with The Associated Press that they were forced to leave at gunpoint and that he witnessed Israeli troops detaining three men. Attacks persist in both the north and south Meanwhile, in northern Gaza, a significant number of individuals were killed in the densely populated Jabalia refugee camp during an apparent Israeli airstrike at a crowded UN shelter on Saturday. The Israeli military, which has consistently urged Palestinians to evacuate northern Gaza, only mentioned that its troops were active in the area “with the aim of hitting terrorists”. It seldom comments on individual strikes and only asserts that it targets Hamas while striving to minimize harm to civilians. In southern Gaza, an Israeli airstrike struck a residential building near the town of Khan Younis on Saturday, resulting in the deaths of at least 26 Palestinians, according to a doctor at the hospital where the bodies were taken. Doctors Without Borders, an international aid organization, reported that a convoy of staff members and their families attempted to leave northern Gaza in a clearly marked convoy on Saturday but turned back after shots were fired at a busy Israeli checkpoint. On their way back to Gaza City, the convoy was attacked and a member of the staff’s family was killed, as per the report. The assailants were not immediately identified. According to Palestinian health authorities, over 11,500 Palestinians have died. Another 2,700 have been reported missing, believed to be trapped under debris. The tally does not distinguish between civilians and combatants; Israel claims to have eliminated thousands of militants.

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