Ashraf al-Qudra, the Palestinian Health Ministry spokesman in Gaza, who is inside the al-Shifa Hospital, says Israeli forces have turned the facility into a “military base for its operations”.
He said army vehicles are not moving from the vicinity of the complex “at all”, as large numbers of Israeli soldiers have been sweeping through the basement and the ground floor of the hospital, including the special surgical unit.
“Every now and then there are sounds of sporadic gunfire inside the complex, whether it’s from snipers or from the [army] vehicles,” he told Al Jazeera.
“The reality here is cruel and painful,” al-Qudra added, as people lack the “most basic of life’s necessities”, including food and water.
Here are other key things he said:
- In eight days, 50 patients have died at the hospital; This includes four dialysis patients, and three premature babies.
- Al-Qudra warned that other patients would die in the coming hours and days.
- “The health of the premature babies who were in incubators remains unstable, and our medical teams are attempting with the simplest means to keep them alive.”
- The premature babies are suffering from multiple illnesses, including diarrhea and vomiting.