Skip to main content

Israel bombed the journalist tent within the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir Al-Balah. (Photo: video grab)

By Abdallah Aljamal – Gaza

The Palestine Chronicle spoke with two journalists and a resident from Gaza, who witnessed the devastation caused by the Israeli bombing on the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital.

Six months of Israel’s genocidal war on Gaza have made millions of people displaced. According to United Nations figures, as of January, a staggering 85 percent of the total population of Gaza, 1.9 million civilians, had been forcibly displaced by Israel’s military operations.

The situation in the makeshift refugee camps across the Strip is catastrophic, with medical sources raising the alarm about the spread of diseases, particularly among children.

Unfortunately, even living in a tent amid extreme hardship does not guarantee safety, as no place has been safe in the Gaza Strip since the beginning of Israel’s assault on October 7.

On March 31, Israeli bombs targeted a group of tents set up for journalists inside the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in the central city of Deir Al-Balah.

The Palestine Chronicle spoke with two journalists and a resident from Gaza, who witnessed the devastation caused by the Israeli bombing. 

Before Noon Prayer

“It was a Sunday morning, half an hour before the noon prayer, when we were surprised by Israeli shelling,” Palestinian journalist Ayman Shamma told The Palestine Chronicle.

“They bombed the gate of the reception and emergency department inside the hospital. At least two people were killed and many others wounded. Ambulances and dozens of tents were damaged, along with some parts of the hospital,” Shamman added.

“They targeted the vicinity of the tents of journalists, where live broadcasts are carried out to cover the arrival of martyrs and injuries to the hospital,” he continued. 

“From there, journalists also communicate live with their channels, in a desperate attempt to convey the suffering of the people of Gaza, expose the crimes of the occupation, and spread the Palestinian voice to the world.”

In the attack, dozens of tents were burned or damaged, and many displaced people were scattered. 

“Hospitals are not safe. No place is safe to everyone in Gaza.”

No Red Lines

Palestinian journalist Mohammed al-Khatib told The Palestine Chronicle. 

“During these six months of war, the occupation bombed houses very close to the hospital, and Apache helicopters fired at the displaced people inside the complex, but we did not expect the Israeli occupation forces to directly bomb the hospital compound and kill displaced people within the hospital walls,” he said.

“This is a new crime committed by the occupation, which should be included in the trial for genocide before the International Court of Justice,” al-Khatib explained. 

“But there are no red lines for the occupation. Israel kills and bombs everywhere and every time, while the United States continues to offer its support in terms of weapons, equipment, and even military advice.”

‘We Don’t Know Where to Go’

Hassan Nofal is a young resident from Gaza. Since his sister was seriously injured, four months ago, he and his family embarked on a desperate journey to look for safety.

“My sister was seriously injured during the shelling of her husband’s house over four months ago. We fled with my family, my injured sister, and my younger brother, who suffers from a severe disability, to the European Hospital in the eastern part of the southern city of Khan Yunis city,” Nofal told us. 

After the Israeli invasion of Khan Yunis, however, the family moved again.

“We brought my sister with us and set up a tent inside the Al-Aqsa Hospital, where my injured sister received treatment inside the tent,” he explained.

“On March 31, my mother and my injured sister traveled to receive treatment. I stayed in the tent with my younger sister and my disabled brother. The bombing targeted a tent very close to ours, but we were spared injury,” Nofal said. 

“The bombing caused a state of fear and panic among all the displaced people,” he added, while still in a very emotional state. 

“All the displaced people inside the hospital are either injured or patients who need to be close to the hospital to receive treatment. What the occupation is doing in Gaza is beyond human imagination,” Nofal lamented. 

“These crimes must stop, and hospitals must remain out of bombing and destruction. But the occupation in this war has violated everything, and there is no longer any safe place in the Gaza Strip.”

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Abdallah Aljamal is a Gaza-based journalist. He is a correspondent for The Palestine Chronicle in the Gaza Strip.

Leave a Reply