Dozens of bodies have begun to be buried in a mass grave surrounded by Israel at al-Shifa hospital in Gaza.

Gaza’s Al Shifa Hospital began burying dozens of bodies this Tuesday in a mass grave dug at the same medical facility, while Gaza’s health ministry condemned Israel’s siege of the hospital complex, which has led to the loss of nearly all of it. With those who stay inside.

After several days of not being able to store them in cold storage due to hostilities in the area or lack of electricity, the Wafa news agency reports that 170 corpses piled up in Al Shifa this Tuesday were buried after several days. siege and bombardment” by the Israeli army.

“We are digging a mass grave to bury the dead at Al Shifa Hospital after the occupation (Israel) continued to take bodies out for burial” and after stray dogs “mutilated some of the bodies,” Youssef Abu Rish said. Deputy Health Minister of Hamas-controlled Gaza.

According to health sources, the same ministry lost contact with Al Shifa medical staff in the last few hours, days after reports of an Israeli siege and attacks on the hospital, which ambulances were unable to leave or enter after Friday night.

Considering this, the Ministry explained that the information about the hospital is based on the information of journalists stationed there. According to these journalists, the mass grave excavated in the building is small and does not have room for all the dead, and basic medical facilities are even more scarce and operations are carried out without anesthesia and oxygen.

“Al Shifa Hospital has become a veritable graveyard for the sick and wounded, and anyone who moves in or around the hospital yard is under fire,” the center’s medical staff said in a statement, as quoted by local media. repeated for days.

Al Shifa – the largest hospital in the Strip – is located in the center of Gaza City, where fighting is ongoing between Palestinian militias and Israeli forces, who are stepping up their incursion into the Strip.

Israel says the Islamist movement maintains networks of tunnels and military infrastructure under and around Gaza’s hospitals, which Hamas denies.

Ismail al-Tawabta, a spokesman for the government communications office in Gaza, told the Arab television network Al Jazeera that Al Shifa remains under Israeli blockade, and that it has been targeted eight times in a row and that several hospitals. They are in a similar situation in the Strip.

The Israeli army has denied in recent days that it has besieged the hospital and has called for thousands of internally displaced people to evacuate, although witnesses on the ground, medical sources and local media say evacuation is almost impossible. fighting and Israeli sniper fire in the area.

“There are a lot of corpses in front of the main door, there are also injured people who can be taken inside. When we sent an ambulance to fetch the patients, they had barely advanced a few meters and were attacked. A sniper attacked the patients. We operated on three people who suffered from these attacks and who had gunshot wounds,” said a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) surgeon who was still in Al Shifa on Monday.

Three children died due to lack of electricity

The burial of the bodies in Al Shifa is the first step to reduce the risk of epidemic diseases in the health center itself, which is almost inactive under the whole situation and where at least thirty patients died in the hospital. In recent days. due to the lack of resources to serve them.

Three premature babies also died in incubators due to lack of electricity, and another 36 are at risk of losing their lives, Health reported.

After controversy over this, the Israeli army assured that it would move the incubators from the Israeli hospital to Al Shifa Hospital itself to ensure the care of the premature babies in coordination with the hospital’s medical staff. Ashraf al-Qudra, a spokesman for Gaza’s health ministry, said no agreement had yet been made to carry out any such evacuations, Reuters reported.

The non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) is calling for an investigation into “repeated, clearly illegal attacks by the Israeli army on health facilities, medical personnel and transport”, which it says may amount to “war crimes”. The unit said all of this was “plaguing Gaza’s health system” and after days of heavy fighting as Israel advanced on the ground to the north and into Gaza City, “concerns about disproportionate attacks are growing in hospitals”.

“Even the threat of an attack or minor harm can have enormous life-and-death consequences for patients and health care workers,” says HRW, which calls on the Israeli government to “end attacks on hospitals,” which the court. The International Criminal Court and the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory “must investigate”

According to HRW, despite Israel’s accusations that Hamas is “cynically using hospitals”, whatever the evidence, there is no reason “to deprive hospitals and ambulances of their protected status under international humanitarian law”.

Source: El Diario

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