Israel says Gaza hospital military 'activity' over

GAZA: The Israeli army said Saturday it had discovered weapons and arrested around 80 Hamas members in military "activity" at a hospital in Gaza, which Hamas described as a "horrific massacre."

The Hamas-controlled health ministry said on Wednesday that Israeli forces had "fired at patient rooms" and arrested staff at the Kamal Adwan hospital in Gaza City during a "siege" that lasted several days.

The UN humanitarian agency OCHA said the same day that the hospital director and about 70 other medical staff were "detained in an unknown location outside of the hospital."

It said Israeli forces had released five doctors and female staff but there were reports of "ill-treatment" of those who had been held.

On Saturday, the Israeli army said it had "completed its activity in the area of the Kamal Adwan hospital", which it charged "had been used by Hamas as a command and control centre."

"The troops apprehended approximately 80 fighters... destroyed infrastructure in the area" and found "numerous weapons", the army said.

Troops also "questioned the hospital workers", it said.

"The workers confessed that weapons were hidden in incubators... that were supposed to be used to treat premature babies," the army claimed.

In a statement Saturday, Hamas accused Israeli troops of having carried out a "horrific massacre" inside the hospital and said they had destroyed "with bulldozers the tents of the displaced people" sheltering there, causing a "number of deaths."

The Hamas government has said that at least 18,800 people have been killed in the territory since the outbreak of the war, which was triggered by the group's bloody attack on Israel on October 7.

That attack left around 1,140 people dead, according to official figures.--AFP

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