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What is known about what Israel says it found in a Gaza hospital

Gaza’s largest hospital, Al-Shifa, has become a flashpoint in Israel’s war against Hamas, which began when gunmen from the militant group crossed the border into Israel on October 7, killing around 1,200 people.

Palestinians and aid agencies say recent clashes in and around Al-Shifa are proof of Israel’s wanton disregard for civilian life in Gaza, while Israel accuses Hamas of using the hospital complex as a shield for its operations.

In addition to providing medical care, Al-Shifa Hospital has recently become a key shelter for thousands of Palestinian civilians fleeing Israeli bombings.

Since launching its operation at the hospital on November 15, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have shown images of a tunnel shaft and military equipment, but have not yet presented conclusive evidence of the large-scale command and control center. that claim to be there.

Hamas, the Gaza Health Ministry and hospital authorities denied Israel’s statements, saying that hospitals in the Strip were only used to treat patients.

Doctors in Al-Shifa also raised an alarm about deteriorating conditions inside hospital facilities, which are struggling to meet patients’ needs amid supply shortages and the presence of Israeli troops.

The IDF is now under pressure to deliver on the promise of “concrete evidence” from the Hamas command center under Al-Shifa.

The progress of the operation in Gaza and Israel’s credibility may be at stake, as the death toll in the territory occupied by Palestinians exceeds 12,000, according to authorities in the Hamas-controlled Strip.

Here’s what we know so far:

What does Israel say?

For weeks, the IDF has said that Hamas has been using Gaza’s largest hospital as a cover for what it calls an underground terrorist infrastructure.

IDF spokesman Daniel Hagari said Hamas had a command and control center – or headquarters – under the hospital complex. Other high-ranking Israeli officials also insisted on the existence of the site.

What evidence was given by Israel

Over the weekend, the IDF took CNN and other news organizations to a newly exposed tunnel shaft on the grounds of the Al-Shifa hospital complex that they say was used by Hamas.

The structure appeared to be sizable, with the remains of a ladder hanging over the opening and a post that looked like the hub of a spiral staircase running through the middle of the shaft.

Israel also released a video

Filmed on Friday from inside the well, the video shows a staircase leading down to a concrete tunnel that, according to the military, was 55 meters long and located 10 meters below ground.

In the images it is possible to see that at the end of the tunnel there is a metal door with a small window, which the IDF said they have not yet opened, as they believe that Hamas may have placed a trap there.

What Hamas says

Israel’s allegations were vehemently denied by Hamas, the Gaza Ministry of Health and hospital officials.

The director general of the Hamas-controlled health ministry, Dr. Medhat Abbas, told CNN that Gaza’s hospitals “are only used to treat patients” and are not used “to hide anyone.”

Source: CNN Brasil

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