Hamas Says 13 Killed In Israeli Strike On Gaza’s Biggest Hospital

The Gaza Strip’s Hamas leadership reported Friday that an Israeli airstrike on the territory’s largest hospital killed 13 people.

A government statement reported “thirteen martyrs and dozens wounded in an Israeli strike on Al-Shifa compound today” in central Gaza City, citing a toll that AFP could not independently verify.

Mohammad Abu Salmiya, director of Al-Shifa hospital, stated that “Israeli tanks fired on Al-Shifa hospital,” but the Israeli military did not respond immediately.

On Thursday, Israel reported heavy battle near the hospital, claiming to have killed dozens of militants and destroyed tunnels critical to Hamas’s ability to fight.

The Israeli army has repeatedly accused Hamas of using hospitals, particularly Al-Shifa, to coordinate their attacks against the army and also as hideouts for its commanders.

Hamas authorities and doctors deny the accusations.

After Hamas fighters flooded across the border on October 7, Israel started an offensive in Gaza, killing over 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and seizing approximately 240 captives.

Israel replied, pledging to destroy Hamas, with an aerial and ground campaign that has killed more than 10,800 people, largely civilians and many of them children, according to the health ministry in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.

Abu Mohammad, 32, had sought safety at the hospital with 15 family following the bombardment of his neighborhood in Gaza City’s northeast.

“There is no safe place left. The army hit Al-Shifa. I don’t know what to do,” he said.

“There is shooting… at the hospital. We are afraid to go out.”

Witnesses said tanks surrounded some other hospitals in Gaza City as combat raged on, driving hundreds of thousands of civilians to escape to the territory’s south in recent weeks.

At daybreak, AFPTV images showed a flare and smoke rising over the city. Sounds of suspected gunshots and explosions could be heard early Friday.

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