A look at the top developments from Israel’s war on Gaza:
- Thirty-one premature babies were evacuated from the embattled Al-Shifa hospital in northern Gaza on Sunday and transferred to another facility in the southern part of the enclave, the World Health Organization said on social media. The United Nations agency has called Al-Shifa, which is Gaza’s largest and most modern hospital, a “death zone” amid an Israeli siege of the complex. The agency’s chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the evacuated babies were “very sick” and had been moved under “extremely intense and high-risk security conditions”.
- Israel’s military on Sunday released videos that it claims show hostages being taken to Al-Shifa hospital after Palestinian militant group Hamas launched an attack on southern Israel on October 7, which killed 1,200 people and triggered the war. Israel on Sunday also shared footage purportedly showing a 55-metre-long, 10-metre-deep tunnel under the besieged hospital in Gaza, claiming it was used by Hamas for military operations, Al Jazeera reported. A military spokesperson told a media briefing that one of the hostages was a soldier, who was murdered inside the hospital by Hamas, Reuters reported. Officials in Israel have justified storming the hospital, claiming that Hamas maintains a sprawling command post inside and under Shifa and uses civilians as cover.
- Responding to the videos, the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said the authenticity of the footage cannot be verified. It added that Israel is responsible for the deterioration and collapse of health services in Gaza. Over 13,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli strikes since October 7 and there are severe shortages of food, water, medicine and fuel in the besieged territory. “Corpses are spreading out in the emergency department, patients are screaming, the medical staff is quite helpless, while the [Israeli] army is walking freely around in the hospital,” Al-Shifa hospital director Muhammad Abu Salima told the BBC.
- The Qatari government, which is mediating between Israel and Hamas to secure the release of around 240 hostages in the Palestinian militant group’s custody, said it is hopeful of reaching a deal soon. Qatar’s Prime Minister Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said on Sunday that “very minor practical and logistical obstacles remain”, the BBC reported. Negotiations have so far led to the release of four hostages, including two United States citizens.
- Israeli forces have also launched an attack on an Indonesian hospital in Gaza, killing 12 people, Al Jazeera reported. Among those who died were doctors and patients. The hospital, built with Indonesian funds, is the main trauma hospital in northern Gaza and has treated thousands of Palestinians under risky conditions, media reports said. “We fear Israeli forces will repeat what it did at Al-Shifa hospital,” a spokesperson told Al Jazeera. “The situation is catastrophic and Israeli forces are only intensifying their attacks.”
- The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Turk, said in a video that he is “appalled by horrendous events of past 48 hours” in Gaza. He appeared to be referring to Israeli strikes on the Jabalia refugee camp on Saturday, which also hit a school run by the United Nations that was used as a shelter for people displaced in the conflict. “How much more violence, bloodshed and misery will it take before people come to their senses?” Turk asked. “How many more civilians will be killed? This must stop. Humanity must come first. A ceasefire on humanitarian and human rights grounds is desperately needed. Now.”
- Why have so many people refused to condemn Hamas?
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