Israel renewed its operation at Gaza’s largest hospital Thursday, targeting what it said was a Hamas command centre nestled among patients, medics and the displaced.
‘Tonight we conducted a targeted operation into Shifa hospital,’ said Major General Yaron Finkelman, the head of Israeli military operations in Gaza. ‘We continue to move forward.’
Gaza’s Hamas-controlled health ministry said Thursday that Israeli bulldozers had ‘destroyed parts of the southern entrance’ of the hospital.
Both Israel and its top ally the United States believe Hamas has a command centre below the Al-Shifa complex, which has become a focal point in the war.
The Palestinian militant group and directors at the hospital have denied the charge.
Before Israel first sent troops into the hospital complex on Wednesday, UN agencies estimated that 2,300 patients, staff and displaced civilians were sheltering at Al-Shifa.
Israel’s army claimed an initial raid had uncovered military equipment, weapons and what spokesman Daniel Hagari described as ‘an operational headquarters with comms equipment’.