The assault on the hospital has triggered global condemnation, particularly concerning the significant loss of life, including patients and displaced Palestinians.
A targeted airstrike by Israeli forces has devastated a crowded hospital complex in central Gaza, resulting in an estimated death toll of 500 individuals, encompassing patients and those seeking refuge, as reported by authorities in the besieged Gaza Strip.
Gaza’s health ministry asserted that the explosion on Wednesday at the al-Ahli Arab Hospital was a result of an Israeli air raid. Israel, in turn, has claimed that the incident was caused by a misfired rocket from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) armed group, an allegation vehemently denied by the PIJ.
The incident has swiftly garnered international condemnation, with news outlets and social media flooded with visuals of engulfed rooms and overloaded stretchers.
Expressing strong disapproval, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) declared on social media, “This is outrageous and again it shows a flagrant disregard for the lives of civilians.”
King Abdullah II:
King Abdullah II of Jordan echoed the sentiment, labeling the attack a “massacre” and a “shame on humanity.”
The Gaza health ministry released a statement underscoring the crucial role the hospital played in providing shelter to civilians. It was a haven for hundreds of sick and wounded, as well as those forcibly displaced from their homes.
Overwhelmed by the continuous shelling from the Israeli army, tens of thousands of families sought refuge in Gaza’s strained hospitals.
Al Jazeera’s Footage:
Al Jazeera’s footage from the scene depicted medics and civilians grappling with the grim task of recovering bodies, using white bags or blankets. The hospital courtyard bore witness to bloodstains and charred vehicles.
Mustafa Barghouti, leader of the Palestinian National Initiative (PNI), emphasized to Al Jazeera that the attack on the hospital should compel world leaders to reassess their support for Israel. He questioned the international response, stating, “Nobody in the world even attacks hospitals in any other country of the world. Will they condemn this Israeli massacre? Will they condemn this Israeli behaviour? They know they can stop Israel. They are the ones who are giving weapons and money and support to these Israeli aggressors.”