Israel and Hamas began negotiating the details of a ceasefire agreement

Israel attacks Al-Shifa, aiming to undermine the role of Hamas with aid

(Monday) Israel again attacked Al-Shifa Hospital, the largest medical building in Gaza City, for more than 12 hours and turned its corridors and surroundings into a war zone, in an operation that Palestinian faction sources told Asharq Al-Awsat aimed to attack “Hamas’ sovereignty” in Gaza City and undermine its attempts. To “regain control” and play a role in the issue of bringing aid into the city, which was a stronghold of its activity before last October 7.

The Israeli army announced (Monday) that it had killed Brigadier General Faiq al-Mabhouh during its attack on Al-Shifa Hospital, and considered him the “operations official” in the internal security apparatus of the Hamas government. It also confirmed the arrest of others and charged them with working with Hamas, and he also acknowledged that A soldier loyal to him was killed.

An Israeli army spokesman said: “After receiving intelligence information from the General Security Service and the Military Intelligence Service regarding the presence of a number of Hamas officials in Al-Shifa Hospital, and as part of the raid by the army forces and the General Security Service (Shin Bet) on the place, the so-called Faiq Al-Mabhouh was eliminated. Head of the Operations Directorate of the Internal Security Service of the terrorist organization Hamas. The Israeli army raided Al-Shifa and asked Al-Mabhouh to surrender himself, but he refused, and a violent clash broke out.

Palestinians help a man who was injured (Monday) after an Israeli bombing of central Gaza (AFP)

The Israeli army spokesman identified Al-Mabhouh as “responsible for the Internal Security Operations Department and for Hamas’ systems in routine and combat operations.”

However, a statement from the “Government Media Office” in Gaza said that “Al-Mabhouh, the leader of Hamas, was undertaking the task of coordinating with the tribes and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to bring and secure humanitarian aid to the northern Gaza Strip.”

The statement conveyed that “Israel’s targeting of Al-Mabhouh confirms beyond any doubt that he is striving with all force to spread chaos in the Gaza Strip, and to prevent facilitating the arrival of humanitarian aid to hundreds of thousands of hungry people in the Gaza and northern governorates,” noting that “the killing of Al-Mabhouh came two days after the success of… Efforts to bring 15 aid trucks into northern Gaza.

“residual sovereignty”

Palestinian sources in the factions in the Gaza Strip told Asharq Al-Awsat: “Israel’s operation was aimed at striking Hamas’ remaining sovereignty in the city.” She added, “General Al-Mabhouh was responsible for police operations in the Gaza Strip, including securing the arrival and distribution of aid trucks. He was in contact with UNRWA and the tribes.”

The sources believed that “Israel does not want that.” It does not want any role for Hamas. It targets the movement’s authority, and wants to promote chaos by trying to impose other armed parties as the authority responsible for aid.”

Israel is trying to push tribes, families, and militants to organize the aid distribution process, but most of them refuse to participate except “through coordination with the security services, of which Al-Mabhouh was one of the most important officials.”

Palestinians gather (Monday) to receive aid outside an UNRWA warehouse in Gaza (Reuters)

The Israeli army claimed that it “acted based on information about senior Hamas officials using the hospital as a command and planning center to carry out activities.”

Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari said: “We know that (Hamas saboteurs) have regrouped inside the hospital and are using it to lead attacks against Israel.”

The operation began at approximately 2:30 am, when forces from the 401st Armored Brigade of the Israeli army and other special forces, along with the General Security Service (Shin Bet), surrounded the hospital, before a large armed clash broke out in which Al-Mabhouh and others were killed, and Israeli Sergeant Matan. Vinogradov (20 years old), from the 932nd Battalion of the Nahal Brigade.


The Israeli attack turned Al-Shifa Hospital into a war zone, and video footage showed an exchange of fire in the vicinity of the hospital and neighboring areas, and a roadside bomb was detonated against an Israeli armored vehicle.

During the attack, the Israeli army forced residents living near the hospital and residents of the nearby Al-Rimal neighborhood in Gaza City to evacuate the area and go to the “humanitarian zone” in Al-Mawasi on the coast of southern Gaza.

The Israeli army spokesman in Arabic, Avichai Adraee, published a map attached to the announcement of the areas that must be evacuated. He said, “Civilians must evacuate the area and head south along the coastal road to the Strip.”

Displaced Palestinians flee (Monday) from an area near Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza (AFP)

But several hours after the operation began, the Israeli army said that it “took control of the area, where forces surrounded several buildings in the Shifa complex, and began interrogating detainees in the hospital.” Confirming that about 80 suspects were arrested. The army claimed that some of those arrested were “Hamas members.”

This is the second large-scale attack carried out by Israel in the Shifa complex. Last year, the army carried out an attack on the complex on November 5, and later presented what it said was evidence supporting its long-standing claims that Hamas is using Al-Shifa Hospital as a major operations and command center, and that the hospital is located above tunnels housing headquarters for the movement’s fighters. The destruction of the tunnels under the Shifa area was completed last December.

But the Palestinians rejected Israel’s accusations and justifications, and the World Health Organization rejected any hospital becoming a battlefield.

Calls to stop the war

The head of the Palestinian National Council, Rawhi Fattouh, said: “The fascist occupation army’s siege and bombing of Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City for the second time after its destruction in the first siege, and its killing of dozens of innocent people during the war of genocide and ethnic cleansing, is a clear response from the Netanyahu government to international and European positions.” Which demands an end to the brutal and bloody war on our Palestinian people.”

He added, “What is happening in the medical facilities and Al-Shifa Hospital is a war crime, and a blatant and blatant violation of international law and the Geneva Conventions.”

While the Palestinian factions denied using hospitals for military purposes, Hamas condemned the occupation forces’ storming of the Shifa complex and said that what happened “is an expression of the state of confusion, confusion, and loss of hope in achieving any military achievement other than targeting defenseless civilians.”

Hamas accused the international community of continuing to “give the green light to Israel to continue the war.”

As for the World Health Organization, it expressed its concern after the attack on the “Al-Shifa Complex,” warning that the battles “expose health workers, patients, and civilians to danger.”

The organization’s director, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, stressed that “hospitals should not be battlefields.” Warning that “any hostilities or militarization of the facility would jeopardize health services, the arrival of ambulances, and the delivery of life-saving supplies to residents.”

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