The Israeli military released footage Saturday showing an interrogation session of Hamas terrorists involved in the Oct. 7 massacre in southern Israel. There they confirmed that the terrorist group has a hideout under the Shifa Hospital in Gaza City.
The release of the footage came a day after Israel Defense Forces spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said Hamas’ main operating base was beneath the hospital – the largest in the Gaza Strip – and provided images and audio as evidence of the terrorist organization’s activities.
The IDF’s videos of the interrogations released on Saturday, with English subtitles, show the questioning of two Hamas prisoners.
In one video, a man identified as Amar Sammy Marzuk Abu A’yoah tells his interrogator that he is from the Tuffah district of Gaza City and is a member of the Nukhba, Hamas’s naval commando unit. A’yoah explains the Hamas tunnel network, saying that the tunnels run under neighborhoods, but not every area has an entrance.
Tunnels, he explains, are hidden beneath hospitals and Shifa Hospital has “underground floors.”
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“Shifa is not small, it is a big place where you can hide things,” A’yoah said in interrogation.
Hospitals, medical clinics and facilities are being exploited, he said, because Hamas knows Israel will not target them. The sites could be used to transfer “explosives, weapons, food, medical equipment” for use by the terror group.
“Shifa is a safe place, it will not be attacked. It’s safe for them. We know that,” A’yoah said.
IDF releases footage of interrogation of Hamas terrorists involved in October 7 massacre in southern Israel. It is revealed that the terrorist group has a hideout under the Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. pic.twitter.com/kCwKOBWUGr
— Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian (@manniefabian) October 28, 2023
He also confirmed another Israeli claim that Hamas was hoarding fuel supplies instead of distributing them to Gazans, saying: “They first.” [Hamas] Worry about the machines and their jeeps and then give it to the people.”
A’yoah also stated that people who want to leave Gaza via Egypt can only do so with Hamas’ permission.
In another video, a man identifies himself as Hassan Hassn Hassin Za’areb, a combat medic.
Za’areb says he took part in attacks on Kibbutz Sufa, a community near the Gaza border, where gunmen went house to house killing any civilians they found.
“From what I heard, they are using Shifa Hospital and hiding there. But I don’t know anything about Najar,” he says, naming another medical center in Gaza, in the city of Rafah.
On Friday, Hagari said Hamas had several underground complexes under Shifa that were used by the terror group’s leaders to direct attacks against Israel.
The military spokesman said Israel had “concrete evidence” that “hundreds of terrorists flocked to the hospital to hide” after the Oct. 7 massacre in which about 2,500 terrorists crossed the border under the cover of a barrage of rockets More than 100,000 people stormed 20 communities near the Gaza Strip. They killed about 1,400 people, the vast majority of them civilians, massacring them in their homes and at an outdoor music festival. They also kidnapped over 220 people as hostages in the Gaza Strip.
Members of the Hamas terror group guard the entrance to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, August 26, 2020. (Khalil Hamra/AP)
Israel has vowed to destroy Hamas in the wake of the attack while seeking to avoid civilian casualties. Intensive attacks were carried out on terrorist targets against an expected ground attack.
Hamas and other terrorist groups continued to fire rockets into southern and central Israel, resulting in additional deaths and injuries.
According to the IDF, Hamas’ internal security also has a command center at Shifa Hospital from which it directs rocket fire at Israel and stores weapons.
The hospital’s energy infrastructure is also used by Hamas’s underground base, Hagari said, accusing the terror group of using the hospital and its residents – with 1,500 beds and around 4,000 staff – as human shields.
Arab and Western officials told the New York Times over the weekend that Hamas is stockpiling food and fuel in the Gaza Strip, depriving residents who desperately need it.
Israel, which normally supplies the Gaza Strip with fuel, stopped all deliveries after Hamas’s attack on the country on October 7. It has said it will allow Palestinian civilians to import food, water and medical supplies – but not fuel – from Egypt to southern Gaza as long as the supplies do not reach Hamas.
The United Nations has warned that hospitals and other vital services in the Palestinian territories risk being closed without fuel supplies.
The IDF insists that there is currently no humanitarian crisis in Gaza and that it is closely monitoring the situation.
Since Israel launched retaliatory air and artillery strikes on the day of the attack, more than 7,000 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip, according to the territory’s Hamas-run health ministry. These figures cannot be independently verified and include Palestinian terrorists killed by Israel as well as Palestinian civilians killed by errant rockets fired by terrorist groups in Gaza.
Israel says it killed 1,500 Hamas terrorists in Israel on and after October 7.
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