People search through buildings, destroyed during Israeli air strikes in the southern Gaza Strip. Photo: Getty

Israel: We’ve found the Hamas tunnel under Al Shifa hospital

The army released a video it said showed a tunnel entrance in an outdoor area of Al Shifa, Gaza’s biggest hospital.

The video, which Reuters could not immediately verify, showed a deep hole in the ground, littered with and surrounded by concrete and wood rubble and sand.

It appeared the area had been excavated; a bulldozer appeared in the background.

The army said its troops also found a vehicle in the hospital containing a large number of weapons.

Hamas said in a statement late on Thursday that claims by the Pentagon and US State Department that the group uses Al Shifa for military purposes “is a repetition of a blatantly false narrative, demonstrated by the weak and ridiculous performances of the occupation army spokesman”.

The United States was confident in an assessment from its own intelligence agencies on Hamas activities in Al Shifa hospital and would neither share nor elaborate on it, White House spokesperson John Kirby said on Thursday.

No phones, no fuel

The two telecoms companies in Gaza said all services in the territory were down as energy supplies had run out. Israel refuses fuel imports, saying Hamas could use them for military purposes.

With communications out and in the absence of fuel, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, said it was impossible to co-ordinate humanitarian aid truck convoys.

“If the fuel does not come in, people will start to die because of the lack of fuel. Exactly as from when, I don’t know. But it will be sooner rather than later,” UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini said.

Palestinian civilians have borne the brunt of Israel’s weeks-long military campaign in retaliation for an October 7 massacre and kidnappings by Hamas that Israel says killed 1200 people, mostly civilians.

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