Gaza hospital strike Explosion Hits Gaza Hospital, Resulting in Numerous Casualties
Reports from the Gaza Health Ministry indicate that an explosion at the Al Ahli Arab Hospital in the heart of Gaza City has resulted in the loss of at least 500 lives. Tragically, this facility was serving as a refuge for a multitude of residents who had sought shelter after fleeing their homes in northern Gaza due to the ongoing Israeli airstrikes. The dire situation in Gaza continues to worsen, with residents facing shortages of essential supplies such as medicine, food, water, and electricity.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have disavowed any involvement in the attack, attributing the explosion to a malfunctioned rocket launch by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The IDF’s statement clarified that an enemy rocket barrage was launched towards Israel and, regrettably, passed near the hospital, leading to the catastrophic incident.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asserted, “The culprits behind the hospital’s assault are the ruthless terrorists in Gaza.”
Dr. Ghassan Abu Sittah, a member of Doctors Without Borders who was performing a surgery at the time, described the harrowing experience, saying, “There was a powerful explosion, and the operating room ceiling collapsed. This is a dreadful tragedy.”
President Biden expressed his outrage and sorrow in a written statement, expressing his deep concern over the explosion at the Al Ahli Arab Hospital. He immediately contacted King Abdullah II of Jordan and Prime Minister Netanyahu to gather further information about the incident, reaffirming the United States’ commitment to safeguarding civilian lives during conflicts.
The World Health Organization (WHO) condemned the hospital attack and called for the immediate protection of civilians and healthcare workers. WHO noted that this hospital was among 20 in northern Gaza facing evacuation orders from the Israeli military. Evacuation, however, remained unfeasible due to the prevailing insecurity, the critical condition of numerous patients, and the lack of ambulances, staff, healthcare system capacity, and alternative accommodations for the displaced.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency warned that Gaza hospitals had less than 24 hours of fuel left to operate, intensifying the humanitarian crisis.
In response to the tragedy, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has declared three days of mourning.