The United States announced that its own intelligence department confirmed that Hamas operates command centers underneath hospitals in the Gaza Strip, including the Al-Shifa Hospital, which was raided by the IDF on Wednesday.
While this announcement by U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby is another expression of the Biden administration’s exceptional public support of Israel during the war so far, the Palestinian side continues to increase its pressure on the U.S. to stop the fighting in the Gaza Strip.
Kirby said the information that corroborated repeated Israeli claims about the misuse of Gaza’s hospitals was gathered by American sources, independent of Israel’s intelligence.
“It comes from a variety of intelligence methods — of our own, of our own,” Kirby stressed, adding that Hamas, and also the terror organization Palestinian Islamic Jihad, operated command centers and weapon depots under several hospitals.
He emphasized: “What Hamas is doing… It is a violation of the law of war to headquarter yourself in a hospital.”
The announcement is a diplomatic boon to Israel, coming as it did against the background of increasing international pressure following media reports that described the humanitarian situation in the hospitals as catastrophic, and accusing Israel of war crimes.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. meanwhile, attempted to pressure the U.S. into joining calls for a ceasefire in Gaza during a visit of a U.S. delegation led by the White House coordinator for the Middle East, Brett McGurk, and U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Middle East Affairs, Barbara Leaf, in Ramallah.
In a statement after the meeting, Abbas stressed “the need for the U.S. administration to put pressure on Israel to stop the aggression against the Palestinian people, and to speed up the introduction of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip.”
“There is no security or military solution for the Gaza Strip. It is an inseparable part of the Palestinian state, and the occupation authorities’ plans to separate Gaza cannot be accepted,” he added.
Israel's plans for the future of the Gaza Strip have not yet been made public. While some Israeli politicians, including opposition leader Yair Lapid, have called to give the PA control over the territory, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has indicated he opposes such a move.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.