Gaza’s largest hospital, al-Shifa, has become a “death zone,” the World Health Organization says, announcing plans to evacuate the facility, as Israel’s army said it was expanding operations to destroy Hamas.
The assessment came after a visit by WHO and other UN officials to the hospital, which Israeli troops raided earlier this week. The Israeli military has been operating around the hospital over the past week, uncovering what it has said is evidence of Hamas’s use of the site for terrorist activities.
Israel says Hamas’s main command center is under the hospital in an underground network and its findings revealed tunnels shafts, weapons caches, and evidence that hostages were held there.
The military also recovered the bodies of two Israeli hostages abducted by Hamas during their October 7 massacre, from the area of Shifa Hospital this week.
As the military secures its control over Gaza City, it has begun warning residents of the southern Gaza city of Khan Younis to evacuate, indicating that the ground operation will likely expand to southern areas of the strip in the days and weeks to come.