The two largest hospitals in Gaza suspend operations as the World Health Organization warns of a rise in the number of deaths News of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

The United Nations agency says three nurses were killed in Al-Shifa, and the World Health Organization calls for an immediate ceasefire to stop the loss of life.

The two largest hospitals in Gaza have stopped receiving new patients due to Israeli bombing and shortages of medicine and fuel, amid reports of a high number of deaths among patients and medical staff.

Al-Shifa and Al-Quds Hospital, Gaza’s largest and second-largest hospitals respectively, announced on Sunday that they had suspended operations as the World Health Organization called for an immediate ceasefire to prevent a rise in deaths.

Dr. Nidal Abu Hadros, a neurosurgeon who works at Al-Shifa Hospital, said patients and staff face a “catastrophic” situation with no electricity, no water, and no safe passage.

“This cannot continue for long. Urgent intervention is required to save staff and patients,” Abu Hadros told Al Jazeera.

Hospital director Ahmed Al-Kahlot told Al Jazeera that Kamal Adwan Hospital in northern Gaza also suspended its operations after the main generator ran out of fuel.

Director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that the situation in Al-Shifa Hospital is “terrible and dangerous.”

“The world cannot stand silent while hospitals, which should be safe havens, turn into scenes of death, destruction and despair,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a post on the X website, adding that Al-Shifa Hospital “was not functioning as a hospital.” “Any more than that.”

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Refugees in the occupied Palestinian territories said in its latest update on Sunday that three nurses were martyred at Al-Shifa Hospital since Friday amid Israeli bombing and clashes near the complex.

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Twelve patients, including two premature babies, have also died since the power outage began, while critical infrastructure, including the cardiovascular facility and maternity ward, has been severely damaged, according to the UN agency.

The Gaza Ministry of Health said that three newborns had died.

The World Health Organization said that between 600 and 650 patients, 200 to 500 health workers, and about 1,500 internally displaced people remain in hospital without safe exit.

Among the patients are 36 children who are at risk of death due to the lack of effective incubators, according to the Ministry of Health in the Hamas-controlled enclave.

Israeli forces have surrounded medical facilities in northern Gaza, including Al-Shifa Hospital, which Israeli officials claim is located above a Hamas command center.

Hamas and hospital officials denied that the complex concealed any military infrastructure.

Palestinian officials and people inside the hospital reported that Israeli forces directly targeted the hospital complex with ammunition and snipers.

Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health, Mounir Al-Bursh, said that snipers opened fire on any movement inside the complex.

He told Al Jazeera: “There are wounded people in the house and we cannot reach them.” “We can’t stick our heads out the window.”

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The Israeli military said on Sunday that it had offered to evacuate newborns, placed 300 liters of fuel at the hospital entrance and posted a video of its soldiers carrying containers and placing them on the ground, but Hamas blocked its efforts. .

Hamas denied its refusal of fuel and said that the hospital was under the authority of the Ministry of Health in Gaza.

The director of Al-Shifa Hospital, Muhammad Abu Salamiya, rejected the Israeli statement, describing it as “propaganda.”

“Israel wants to show the world that it does not kill children. “She wants to whiten her image with 300 liters of fuel, which barely lasts 30 minutes,” Abu Salmiya told Al Jazeera.

More than half of Gaza’s 35 hospitals are no longer functioning due to Israeli bombing and ground operations in the Strip, which began in response to the October 7 Hamas attacks on towns in southern Israel.

The Israeli campaign to eliminate Hamas led to the deaths of at least 11,078 Palestinians, according to the Gaza Ministry of Health.

Health officials have not updated the death toll since Friday, citing a collapse in services and communications at hospitals in the Strip.

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