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World Health Organization remains silent on Hamas’ use of Gaza hospital as terror HQ


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JERUSALEM — As the Israeli army continues its week-long operation against hundreds of terrorists holed up at Al-Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest medical center, the United Nations agency charged with promoting – and protecting – access to healthcare around the world has remained silent. , refraining from condemning the cynical use of a hospital by Palestinian terrorist groups.

Repeated requests for comment from the World Health Organization by Fox News Digital were ignored this week, even as the Israeli military continued to engage with fighters from Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, two designated terrorist organizations by the United States, who barricaded themselves inside the hospital. the maternity ward, the emergency room and other locations in the vast center of Gaza City.

“Hamas itself admitted to using almost all hospitals in Gaza, including Shifa Hospital,” Itamar Yaar, former deputy head of Israel’s National Security Council, told Fox News Digital. “This information has been on the table for a long time.”


Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza

Ambulances carrying victims of Israeli strikes crowd the entrance to the emergency department of Al-Shifa hospital, in Gaza City, October 15, 2023. (Dawood Nemer/AFP via Getty Images)

Yaar, who is CEO of Commanders for Israeli Security, an organization of some 550 former senior security officials, said Hamas specifically uses hospitals for its military activities “because it believes Israel will not dare not send its troops to these sites. “

Early in its war against Iran-backed terrorist groups, Israel drew harsh international criticism for allowing its troops to enter Al-Shifa Hospital while searching for terrorists and underground bunkers used by the Hamas fighters. In November, Israel revealed an underground system hidden beneath the hospital, including a command and control center and rooms where the military said hostages kidnapped in Israel during the October 7 mass terrorist attack had been detained.

Director of the World Health Organization

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a ceremony to launch a multi-year partnership with Qatar aimed at making the 2022 FIFA World Cup and other sporting events healthy and safe at WHO headquarters in Geneva, October 18, 2021. (Fabrice Cofrini/AFP via Getty Images)

Israeli forces then withdrew from the area but left the medical campus, which includes several clinics and health care offices, largely intact and able to function, allowing it to treat the thousands of Gaza civilians remaining there. inside the war zone despite Israeli calls for them to do so. evacuate the area.

“When the IDF first visited this site, the information they had about the facilities was limited. But after being there for a few weeks, they got more information,” Yaar said, adding that Israel had probably left surveillance behind. material which informed him of the return of Hamas to the area and the establishment of terrorist operational cells inside the hospital.

“Hamas went back inside the hospital because most of the other buildings nearby were destroyed,” Yaar said. He said it was also likely that the hospital’s medical staff, including its general director, knew that Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad were operating from inside the buildings.

“There are people who will say that the general director of the hospital had no choice but to cooperate with Hamas, and they are right,” Yaar said. “Hamas controls Gaza by using terror against its own people. If the hospital director refused to allow Hamas activities in the hospital, then he would either be fired, arrested or worse.”

IDF troops near Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza.

Shifa Hospital’s 162nd Division and Nahal Reconnaissance Unit troops eliminated armed terrorists in close encounters, cleared several buildings inside the hospital, and located numerous weapons hidden inside the hospital. interior of the various medical devices of the MRI complex as well as on the roof of the hospital. (IDF Spokesperson’s Unit)

Yaar also said the World Health Organization was likely aware of Hamas’ terrorist activities inside the medical center.


“I can understand why the World Health Organization is remaining silent. They are embarrassed because there is no doubt that the people on the ground in Gaza knew what was happening there,” he said. “Maybe they didn’t know all the details, but they knew Hamas was using the hospital.”

Yaar said that now that information about Hamas’s use of the hospital is undeniable, the WHO will likely claim it had no information.

“They’re not ignoring it because they’re anti-Israeli. They’re ignoring it because they think it’s the best way to defend the local population on the ground,” he said. “But in doing so, they are helping Hamas exert more control over the Palestinian people.”

While spokespeople for Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director general of the World Health Organization, ignored multiple requests for comment from Fox News Digital on his organization’s relationship with Hamas, Tedros refuted claims that which his organization would work with the terrorist group in January.

“The WHO refutes Israel’s accusation at yesterday’s Executive Board meeting that the WHO is in ‘collusion’ with Hamas and ‘turning a blind eye’ to the suffering of hostages held in Gaza. Such False claims are harmful and can endanger our staff who are risking their lives to serve vulnerable people. As a United Nations agency, WHO is impartial and works for the health and well-being of all.” he tweeted.

In a briefing with reporters earlier this week, Israeli military spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said troops had killed about 170 terrorists and arrested more than 500 during an intensive one-week operation in hospital. He also said the army had discovered 11 million shekels ($3 million) hidden in the hospital offices as well as large quantities of weapons and ammunition.

In a statement released by the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, in collaboration with the IDF, they said that among the apprehended terrorists were senior figures from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas, Amr Asida, head of the Nablus unit and Mahmoud Qawasmeh, planner of the 2014 kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers.

“Our intelligence services were monitoring Al-Shifa Hospital as it once again became the Hamas terrorism headquarters,” Hagari said. “We dismantled the Hamas military structure in the north, but some terrorist cells remained there. And they all returned, like a magnet, to Al-Shifa.”

IDF helps Gaza

Six humanitarian aid trucks entered the northern Gaza Strip via Israel. The IDF says this was done as part of a pilot program to prevent Hamas terrorists from taking the aid. (IDF Spokesperson’s Unit)

He added that those who surrendered – or were captured by Israel – admitted to using the hospital, saying that not only was it considered a safe area, but it was also attractive because there were always electricity, water and food. Hagari said there were still terrorists barricaded inside the hospital and engaged in fighting Israeli forces.

The spokesperson also said that no patients or medical staff were injured during the delicate operation. Claims last week by a Gaza woman that Israeli soldiers mistreated and raped Palestinian women during the fighting were dismissed as false over the weekend by the Qatari network Al-Jazeera News, which was first to report the story.

Israeli hostage describes sexual assault, beatings and torture in Gaza

Israeli forces have fought terrorist groups at other Gaza hospitals, including last month at Nasser Hospital in the southern Gaza Strip. In December, hostages released by Hamas during a temporary ceasefire reported being held captive in one of Gaza’s hospitals.

Tal Mimran, of the Cybersecurity Research Center at the Hebrew University School of Law, told Fox News Digital that under international humanitarian law, hospitals should have special protection in times of war. However, he added, for every rule, there is also an exception. An exception is if the hospital was used “in order to promote military gain over your adversary.”

“Hamas uses hospitals not only for defensive and offensive purposes, but also for command and control purposes,” Mimran said, adding that using hospitals for military purposes was part of Hamas’ “modus operandi.” Hamas.

IDF Al Shifa Infographic

An infographic produced by the Israeli Defense Forces shows where officials say Hamas has established a command center under Al-Shifa Hospital. (Israel Defense Forces)

The fighting in and around Gaza’s hospitals, he said, has become an important part of the five-month-old Hamas-Israel war.

“This is the first time that Israel has operated with such scale and importance in hospitals in Gaza. It is definitely different from previous cycles or conflicts,” Mimran said, adding that the IDF was trying to operate in a manner respectful.

During the first round of fighting in Al-Shifa, he said, Israeli forces took their time entering the hospital compound and, when they did, helped to evacuate patients and bring medical equipment. They also built a field hospital nearby, he said.


“This time it was a surprise mission,” Mirmran said of last week’s military operation. “There were fewer civilians and patients but a large number of officers. I haven’t heard of any significant collateral damage. There was no harm to medical staff or patients. So I think this operation will meet the requirements or criteria of international humanitarian law.


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