Palestinians unearth mass grave under rubbles of Shifa Hospital in Gaza after Israeli army withdrawal - as it happened

Ahram Online , Monday 15 Apr 2024

Ahram Online provided coverage of the Israeli war on Gaza on its 192-day.

Central Gaza
People react as they search through the rubble of a collapsed building in the eastern side of the Maghazi camp for Palestinian refugees in the central Gaza Strip on April 15, 2024. AFP


22:30 Palestinians have unearthed a mass grave in the yards of Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City after the Israeli army withdrew from the vicinity of the complex after destroying what used to be the largest medical facility in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli occupation forces executed and buried the bodies of innocent Palestinians in these mass graves during their two-week attack on the hospital in northern Gaza, according to eyewitnesses and survivors.



21:30 According to a copy of an internal memo obtained by The Intercept, the New York Times issued an internal memo instructing journalists to restrict the use of terms like “genocide,” “ethnic cleansing,” and “occupied territory” when reporting on Israel’s war in Gaza.



21:00 Pro-Palestinian demonstrators blocked San Francisco's Gold Gate Bridge on Monday, with aerial footage showing the entire span packed with traffic in one direction while lanes in the other direction were empty.

The protest appeared to be part of a coordinated day of direct action taking place in various cities around the world calling for a ceasefire in Israel's war in Gaza.

Demonstrators who were blocking traffic held a banner reading "Stop the world for Gaza."

Protest group A15 Action said it was coordinating a "multi-city blockade... in solidarity with Palestine."

"In each city, we will identify and blockade major choke points in the economy, focusing on points of production and circulation with the aim of causing the most economic impact," the group said on its website.


Photo: AP


15:00 Gaza's crossings authority said Israel released around 150 detainees from the Palestinian territory on Monday, stating that they had been mistreated in detention.

Israeli soldiers have rounded up hundreds of Palestinians during their more than six-month military offensive in Gaza, holding them without charge before releasing some in groups.

"Since the early hours of the morning, 150 prisoners from various parts of the Gaza Strip who were detained by the Israeli occupation have been released," the spokesman for the Gaza Crossings Authority, Hisham Adwan, told AFP.

"It is very noticeable that there is severe mistreatment of these prisoners, as a number of them were sent to Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital for treatment," he added.

Last month, the crossings authority said 56 Palestinian detainees released from Israeli prisons "showed signs of torture" committed during their detention.

The head of the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, Philippe Lazzarini, said last month that Gazans detained by Israeli forces were coming back "completely traumatized" and reporting "a broad range of ill-treatment."

The reported abuses included threats of electrocution, being photographed naked, sleep deprivation and having dogs used to intimidate them, Lazzarini said.

14:39 The US Central Command (CENTCOM) said its forces destroyed four unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen on Sunday, Reuters reported.

CENTCOM added in a Red Sea update that the Houthis launched an anti-ship ballistic missile toward the Gulf of Aden from Yemen on Saturday and that there were no injuries or damage reported by US, coalition, or commercial ships.

13:30 The Israeli army renewed warnings on Monday for Palestinians in Gaza not to return to the embattled territory’s north, a day after Gaza hospital officials said five people were killed as throngs of displaced residents tried to reach their homes in the war-torn area.

Northern Gaza was an early target of Israel’s war and vast parts of it have been flattened, forcing much of the area’s population to flee south. While around 250,000 people are said to be living in the north, the Israeli occupation army has prevented most displaced people from returning.

Israeli military spokesman Avichay Adraee wrote on X, formerly Twitter, that Palestinians should stay in southern Gaza, where they have been told to shelter because the north is a “dangerous combat zone.”

People appeared to be heeding the new warning, especially after the violence on Sunday.

Hospital authorities in Gaza said that five people were killed by Israeli forces while trying to travel north to their homes. Their bodies were taken to the Awda hospital in the urban Nuseirat camp in central Gaza, hospital records showed.

A further 54 were wounded in the incident, the records showed.

Anaam Mohammad, who was displaced from the northern city of Beit Hanoun and was trying to return, said the army was allowing women and children to cross, but when a group of Palestinians did not make room for them to pass, two tanks arrived and opened fire. Forces also threw smoke bombs, dispersing the crowd.

“People started to run away. People were afraid and could not take the risk and enter a dangerous area,” she said.

Ahead of the violence Sunday, throngs of people crowded a coastal road and moved north by foot and donkey cart. The returnees said they were prompted to make the dangerous journey because they were fed up with the difficult conditions they were forced to live under while displaced.

“We want our homes. We want our lives. We want to return, whether with a truce or without a truce,” said Um Nidhal Khatab, who was displaced from the north.

Northern Gaza and the return of its population is a key sticking point between Israel and Hamas in negotiations underway to try to bring about a ceasefire in exchange for the release of captives.

13:20 Iran said that the Israel-linked ship it seized on the weekend had violated international maritime law and was undergoing "necessary investigations."

Iranian authorities had previously offered little information about why the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps seized the ship MSC Aries ship near the Strait of Hormuz on Saturday.

"The ship was directed into the territorial waters of Iran because it violated international maritime laws," Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nasser Kanani said.

The ship's crew failed to "adequately respond to questions from Iranian authorities," he told a briefing.

"It is certain that this ship belongs to the Zionist regime," Kanani added, referring to Israel.

12:00 The death toll of the Palestinians killed by Israel in Gaza has climbed to at least 33,797 people, the Palestinian Ministry of Health announced.

The toll includes at least 68 deaths over the past 24 hours, the ministry said, adding that 76,465 people have been wounded in the strip since the war began.

11:50 Israeli opposition Leader Yair Lapid said that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government “have become an existential threat to Israel," accusing them of destroying Israeli deterrence.

Lapid stated that both Israel’s friends and enemies “smell weakness” in the current government.

“I was in Washington last week, in meetings with the entire administration. They are shocked by this government: by the lack of responsibility, by the lack of professionalism, by the mismanagement,” he said.

11:41 Lebanese Hezbollah said it had detonated "explosive devices" targeting Israeli soldiers who it said had crossed over into Lebanese territory.

Earlier, Israel's army said four soldiers were wounded overnight in an explosion "in the area of the northern border," but without specifying on which side of the frontier.

11:03 Israeli naval vessels opened fire on displaced Palestinians who were trying to return to their homes in northern Gaza via Al-Rashid Street, wounding at least two, WAFA agency reported.

Meanwhile, a child died from injuries she sustained Sunday after her family was targeted by Israeli forces as they attempted to return to the north.

Earlier Sunday, at least five civilians, including a woman, were killed in an Israeli airstrike targeting displaced people on Al-Rashid Street.

Additionally, Israeli aircraft targeted a house east of the Al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, coinciding with artillery shelling on the western areas of Gaza City and north of the Nuseirat camp in the central Gaza Strip.

A Palestinian activist captured the moment when Israeli occupation forces targeted journalists and displaced Palestinians who were attempting to return to Gaza City and northern Gaza.



10:40 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will reconvene his war cabinet today, to decide on any action in response to Iran's weekend drone and missile attack, a government source told Reuters.

The war cabinet, comprising Netanyahu, Defence Minister Yoav Gallant, former Defence Minister Benny Gantz and several observers, previously met on Sunday night.

Most of the Israeli war cabinet wants a response to Iran's retaliatory attack on the country on Saturday, but are said to be split on the scale and timing of it.

10:10 A Palestinian youth was killed and three others were injured, one critically, during an Israeli military incursion into the city of Nablus in the northern part of the occupied West Bank.

According to medical sources at Rafidia Hospital, the young man was fatally shot by Israeli soldiers in the chest, while another sustained critical injuries to the chest, abdomen, and foot.

The third individual suffered injuries to the foot.

Earlier in the day, undercover Israeli forces infiltrated the Al-Marij neighbourhood in the city and raided a building belonging to a local Palestinian family.

The occupation forces subsequently intensified their military presence in the alleys and streets of the city. Confrontations ensued with the occupation forces, during which residents were targeted with live fire and tear gas canisters.



09:05 The Palestinian Red Crescent reported that Israeli forces released two PRCS ambulance crews this morning after 50 days of detention.

They were kidnapped at a military checkpoint in Khan Younis while transporting patients from Al-Amal Hospital.

However, the Israeli occupation continues to detain six PRCS crews, and their fate remains unknown.



09:00 The Israeli occupation army said it is activating two reserve brigades for “operational activities” in Gaza.

The announcement comes as Israel prepares for a ground invasion of Rafah – the southern Gaza city. It follows the withdrawal of most ground forces from the strip leaving its troop levels in the territory at the lowest level in six months.

However, the Rafah potential invasion faces stiff international opposition, as over 1.2 million Palestinians, roughly half of Gaza’s population, are now crowded into the city after fleeing the Israeli attacks elsewhere in the territory, with nowhere else to seek refuge.

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