US Unveils Evidence of Hamas Tunnels Beneath Gaza Hospitals
White House Allegation without Evidence
The United States government has made a contentious assertion that the Palestinian organization Hamas is utilizing tunnels underneath hospitals in Gaza, including the enclave’s largest medical facility. Despite making these claims, the White House has yet to provide concrete evidence to support its statements.
John Kirby’s Intelligence Briefing
During a press briefing aboard Air Force One, John Kirby, a spokesperson for the National Security Council, conveyed to reporters that intelligence in their possession suggests that Hamas has been directing military operations from Al Shifa Hospital and may even be storing weapons there. The spokesperson articulated that such utilization of health facilities for military purposes by Hamas would constitute a clear violation of international humanitarian law, going as far as to label these actions as war crimes.
Information sourced from a diverse array of intelligence methods was presented, and Kirby noted that the Biden Administration has taken measures to declassify certain aspects of the data in order to share their conclusions with the media and public.
Complexities for Israeli Defense Efforts
Although Kirby criticized these actions attributed to Hamas, he underscored that this in no way absolves Israel of its duty to safeguard civilian lives. However, he did acknowledge that the situation has indeed complicated Israel’s military efforts to target Hamas. Kirby emphasized, “To be clear, we do not support attacking a hospital from the air. We do not want to see a shooting in a hospital where innocent, defenseless and sick people are simply trying to receive the medical care they deserve,” he stated.
Denials and Warnings Amidst Escalating Tensions
Hamas refutes these claims, insisting on the absence of combatants within the hospital premises and highlighting that hundreds of patients and thousands of civilians are currently stranded within the hospital compound. Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) has expressed concerns by warning that services at Al-Shifa Hospital have been halted, and the facility is at risk of being reduced to a graveyard due to the ongoing conflict.
In a continuing tension-fraught environment, Israeli forces have encircled the Gaza City medical complex, proclaiming that it sits atop a subterranean headquarters of Hamas militants.
Human Rights Advocacy and Calls for Investigation
Amid all these developments, organizations such as Human Rights Watch have called for an in-depth investigation into the Israeli attacks on Gaza hospitals, suggesting that these actions, too, could amount to war crimes.
In light of the escalating humanitarian crisis, there is a dire warning that, due to fuel shortages, hospitals in Gaza are on the brink of closure which may occur in a matter of days, exacerbating an already critical situation for medical services in the Strip.
This article is based on information provided to the press by the National Security Council and reports by Sputnik World. For further information and developments on this story, citations and direct sources from the original content are recommended.