Thousands of Palestinians hope to be able to leave Al Shifa hospital today, the largest in the Gaza Strip, which has had no electricity or water for days and is located in an area that has turned into a battleground between the Israeli army and the Hamas.

At the same time, the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu he referred yesterday, Sunday, during his interview with the NBC television network, to the possibility of an agreement to release some of the 240 hostages of Hamas, a condition according to him for declaring a ceasefire.

“The less I talk about this issue, the more likely it will become a reality,” Mr Netanyahu said, without referring to the hostage negotiations, now in its 38th day of war that broke out on October 7, when the Palestinian Islamist movement carried out an unprecedented attack with 1,200 dead, mostly civilians, the deadliest since the State of Israel in 1948.

Since then, relentless shelling of the Gaza Strip has claimed the lives of 11,180 people, also mostly civilians, including 4,609 children, according to Hamas’ health ministry.

The fighting is centered in the northern part of Gaza City, mainly around hospitals where the Israeli army believes there are strategic infrastructures of Hamas, which uses the sick and civilians as “human shields”, as it insists.

The total siege imposed by Israel on October 9 has deprived the population of the Palestinian enclave of water, electricity, food and medicine, while 1.6 million of the 2.4 million residents have been displaced, according to UN, and the humanitarian situation is described as catastrophic.

Difficult crossing

Some 200,000 Palestinians have left the northern part of the region in the past three days through “corridors” opened daily during humanitarian “pauses”, moving south, where shelling and fighting are less intense, the Israeli military said on Saturday night.

Besides Sifa, the situation is also complicated in other hospitals in Gaza, according to Mohamed Zakout, director of hospitals in the enclave: patients “are on the streets, without any care” after “forced displacements” in two pediatric hospitals, Nasser and Radisi. Another hospital in Gaza City, Al Quds (“Jerusalem”), stopped working yesterday due to a lack of fuel and thus electricity, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent.

“The Israeli army ordered us out of Al-Quds Hospital in the morning,” said Islam Samala, who walked about ten kilometers with his daughter in his arms, while his wife and three other children followed with difficulty.

The Israeli military said it had opened “safe” corridors for civilians to leave some health facilities, including Shifa hospital, where 15,000 people had taken refuge, according to figures from Hamas and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

He added that the “humanitarian corridor” for people to leave the hospital to the south continues to “work”.

But “(Israeli) tanks have now put Ash Shifa hospital under complete siege,” Hamas Deputy Health Minister Youssef Abu Ris told AFP, stressing that “650 patients, including about forty newborns in incubators, are at risk of dying.” die’ as they are in it.

Hamas announced yesterday that “five newborns who were born prematurely” and “seven patients (who were being treated) in intensive care units” died due to the power cut at Shifa Hospital.

However, even those who were able to go to the southern part of the enclave see that it is also the target of Israeli strikes. In Bani Suhaila, near Khan Younis, around ten houses were bombed, resulting in “ten people losing their lives, including women and children”, according to Hamas’ health services.

“I don’t even have bread to feed my children,” said 42-year-old Umm Yaqub, who arrived in Khan Younis three days ago with her husband and their seven children.

“Utmost restraint”

Through X (the former Twitter), the head of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, described the situation at Sifa Hospital as “horrible and dangerous”, after “three days without electricity and water”.

“The gunfire and incessant shelling around him is exacerbating the already very difficult conditions,” continued Dr. Tree. “The world cannot remain silent when hospitals, which should be safe havens, turn into places of death, destruction, despair. Cease fire now,” he added, capitalizing that last word.

However, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said yesterday that he was against an “immediate” ceasefire.

In the meantime, French President Emmanuel Macron, during his conversation with his Israeli counterpart Isaac Herzog, emphasized – according to the Israeli presidency – that he did not “accuse Israel of deliberately harming civilians” in the Gaza Strip, referring to his interview in BBC on Friday, in which he “urged Israel to stop” the “shelling that kills civilians” in the enclave.

Israel’s main ally – which denies it is deliberately targeting civilian facilities – Washington said it opposed fighting in hospitals in Gaza, where “innocents, patients receiving medical care, are caught in the crossfire”.

For its part, condemning with a statement by its head of diplomacy the “use by Hamas of hospitals and civilians as human shields”, the European Union called on Israel to “show maximum restraint” and guarantee the protection of civilians, at the time that the concern that the war will take on wider dimensions intensifies.


The international community fears the spread of the conflict, above all on the borders of Israel and Lebanon, where the exchange of fire escalated yesterday, even beyond the area where organizations close to Iran, Israel’s sworn enemy and the main supporter of Hamas, operate.

Ten people were injured in Israel yesterday when an anti-tank rocket landed in the north of the country, according to emergency services. The Israeli army retaliated by targeting a position from which it originated, in southern Lebanon, where the armed wing of the Shiite movement Hezbollah, which is close to Iran, operates. At the same time, the UN peacekeeping force announced that a blue-collar worker was injured by shots that were not fired by who.

While the US launched new airstrikes in Syria on Sunday, targeting facilities “linked” to Iran, retaliating for “continued attacks” against US military personnel on Syrian and Iraqi territory, the country’s Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced.

It was the third time in less than three weeks that the US Defense Department said it had targeted facilities in Syria it said were linked to Iran; Washington accuses the Islamic Republic of being behind a resurgence of attacks against its troops in Middle East.