Palestinian officials say hundreds were killed by a massive blast at a Gaza hospital as humanitarian concerns mount over Israel’s deprivation of food, fuel and electricity to the enclave’s population.
Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital was sheltering thousands of displaced people when it was bombed, the Palestinian Health Ministry said in a statement. Many victims are still under the rubble, it added.
Palestinian officials blamed ongoing Israeli airstrikes for the lethal incident. But the Israel Defense Forces has “categorically” denied any involvement in the hospital attack, blaming instead, a “failed rocket launch” by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, a rival Islamist militant
group in Gaza.
Britain’s Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Thursday that Israel had suffered an “unspeakable, horrific act of terrorism” as he became the latest western leader to carry out a solidarity visit. His trip to the region came after US President Joe Biden unveiled a deal to allow desperately needed humanitarian aid to enter war-torn Gaza, where one million people have fled their homes amid withering Israeli air strikes. Speaking of the war-torn Gaza region, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak restated that Israel has the full support of Britain and added that the Hamas organization is a terrorist union and not freedom fighters.
Gaza has been under siege by Israel for more than a week in response to the deadly incursion by Hamas, the Islamist militant group that controls the coastal enclave, home to 2.2 million people. Hospitals, meanwhile, are struggling to tend to the wounded across the territory operating with shortages of electricity and water.