The Israeli military said early Wednesday that it is carrying out an operation against Hamas inside Al-
Shifa Hospital, the major complex in Gaza City that is the territory’s largest medical center.
In a posting on social media, the Israel Defense Forces said it was launching “a precise and targeted
operation against Hamas in a specified area” of the hospital complex. The IDF said the operation was
being carried out based on intelligence information.
Israel had previously said that Hamas militants were embedded in the hospital, a claim that U.S. officials
confirmed. Conditions in the hospital complex have recently worsened, as the complex has ran out of
fuel to power its generators.
On Tuesday, the White House said its own intelligence showed that Hamas has used hospitals in Gaza,
along with tunnels buried underneath, to plan operations and store weapons.
The U.S. intelligence appears to back Israeli claims about militant group activities underneath Gaza’s
hospitals — including Al-Shifa Hospital.
“We have information that Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad use some hospitals in the Gaza Strip,
including Al-Shifa, and tunnels underneath them to conceal and to support their military operations and
to hold hostages,” said National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby, speaking to reporters aboard
Air Force One.
For weeks, Israeli officials have said that Hamas is headquartered in an extensive network of tunnels
buried underneath Al-Shifa. Hamas has denied the allegations.
As Israeli troops encircle the hospital in Gaza City, conditions there and at other medical facilities in
northern Gaza have worsened to unimaginable levels, health officials and humanitarian groups on the