Israel’s military announced on November 13 that it had uncovered a Hamas tunnel leading to a Gaza City children’s hospital. They also claim to have discovered Hamas installations within the medical center.
The IDF broadcast on Monday where IDF spokesman Daniel Hagari points to a tunnel opening across a street from the Rantisi Hospital, indicating that the tunnel leads into the hospital.
As the Israeli military’s operation to eradicate Hamas from Gaza enters its sixth week, it has increasingly focused its fire on Gaza’s hospitals.
On Monday, the IDF brought reporters to a children’s hospital, where a spokeswoman stated that Hamas had used the basement as a command and control center and perhaps kept hostages.
The CNN crew went undercover with the IDF and were shown weapons and explosives in a hidden area beneath the Al-Rantisi children’s hospital. Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, a spokesman for the Israeli Defense Forces, called it an “armory.”
Israel has asserted several times that Hamas establishes its operational bases in tunnels beneath hospitals and other civilian facilities. Despite denials from Hamas and Gaza’s health authorities and hospitals, the IDF granted access to the territory on Monday to bolster the accusations.
An increasing body of evidence suggests that medical facilities may be a military target. As physicians warn, they cannot evacuate the most fragile patients, and more shocking photographs and tales from citizens inside surface.
The head of Gaza’s hospitals, Mohammed Zarqout, told CNN that women and children took refuge in the basement of Al Rantisi. The hospital’s administrative offices and pharmacy were also located there.
Zarqout said that not all patients could be evacuated from the hospital because of the presence of Israeli troops.
On Sunday, the IDF declared that they were helping facilitate the evacuation of patients from three hospitals: Al-Shifa, Al-Rantisi, and Nasser.
The IDF is looking into rumors that there is a tunnel leading to the hospital’s basement.
Hagari showed what he claimed was a shaft between a Hamas commander’s home and a school, around 200 meters from Al-Rantisi.