By AREF TUFAHA, MELANIE LIDMAN and WAFAA SHURAFA (Associated Press)
JENIN, West Bank (AP) — Israeli forces disguised as civilian girls and medics stormed a hospital Tuesday within the occupied West Bank, killing three Palestinian militants in a dramatic raid that underscored how lethal violence has spilled into the territory from the conflict in Gaza.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the meantime dominated out a army withdrawal from Gaza or the discharge of hundreds of jailed militants — Hamas’ fundamental two calls for for any cease-fire — casting doubt on the most recent efforts to finish a conflict that has destabilized the broader Middle East. Hamas has been designated as a terrorist group by the United States, Canada and the European Union.
The Palestinian Health Ministry mentioned Israeli forces opened hearth contained in the Ibn Sina Hospital within the West Bank city of Jenin. A hospital spokesperson mentioned there was no change of fireplace, indicating it was a focused killing.
Israel’s army mentioned the militants have been utilizing the hospital as a hideout, with out offering proof. It alleged that a type of focused had transferred weapons and ammunition to others for a deliberate assault, purportedly impressed by Hamas’ Oct. 7 assault on southern Israel that triggered the conflict in Gaza.
Security digicam footage from the hospital reveals a few dozen undercover forces, most of them armed, carrying Muslim headscarves, hospital scrubs or white physician’s coats. One carried a rifle in a single arm and a folded wheelchair within the different.
NETANYAHU REJECTS HAMAS’ KEY DEMANDS
Netanyahu, talking at an occasion elsewhere within the West Bank, denied reviews of a doable cease-fire deal to finish the conflict in Gaza and repeated his vow to maintain preventing till “absolute victory” over Hamas.
“We will not end this war without achieving all of our goals,” mentioned Netanyahu, who is beneath mounting strain from households of the hostages and the broader public to succeed in a deal. “We will not withdraw the Israeli military from the Gaza Strip and we will not release thousands of terrorists,” he mentioned.
On Tuesday, Hamas’ high political chief Ismail Haniyeh mentioned the group was finding out the most recent phrases for a deal, however that the precedence was the “full withdrawal” of Israeli forces from Gaza and that any settlement ought to result in a long-term cease-fire.
He mentioned Hamas’ management had been invited to Cairo to proceed talks. The group, which has reached lopsided change offers with Israel previously, is anticipated to demand the discharge of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners — together with high-profile fighters — in change for the remaining hostages.
Qatar and Egypt, which mediate with Hamas, have held talks with Israel and the United States in current days. U.S. officers mentioned negotiators had made progress towards a deal, together with the phased launch of the remaining hostages over a two-month interval and the entry of extra humanitarian support into Gaza.
The conflict in Gaza started when tons of of Hamas-led terrorists stormed into southern Israel, killing about 1,200 folks, largely civilians, and abducting about 250 others. Over 100 have been launched throughout a weeklong cease-fire in November in change for 240 Palestinians imprisoned by Israel.
Israel’s offensive has killed greater than 26,700 folks in Gaza, in keeping with the Health Ministry within the Hamas-run territory. The ministry rely doesn’t distinguish between fighters and civilians, however it says about two-thirds of the lifeless are girls and minors.
A strike on a residential constructing within the central city of Deir al-Balah on Tuesday killed 11 folks, together with 4 youngsters, in keeping with Associated Press reporters who noticed the our bodies at a hospital.
The conflict has leveled huge swaths of the tiny coastal enclave, displaced 85% of its inhabitants, and pushed 1 / 4 of residents to hunger.
HOSPITALS HAVE BECOME BATTLEGROUNDS
Israel has come beneath heavy criticism for its raids on hospitals in Gaza, which have handled tens of hundreds of Palestinians wounded within the conflict and supplied vital shelter for displaced folks.
Gaza’s well being care system, which was already feeble earlier than the conflict, is on the snapping point, buckling beneath the scores of sufferers in addition to a scarcity of gasoline and medical requirements due to Israeli restrictions and preventing in and close to the amenities.
Israel says militants use hospitals as cowl. The army says it has discovered underground tunnels within the neighborhood of hospitals and situated weapons and autos used within the Oct. 7 assault on hospital grounds.
The Palestinian Red Crescent mentioned Israeli forces raided the Al-Amal Hospital within the southern Gaza metropolis of Khan Younis on Tuesday, the place about 7,000 displaced folks have been sheltering.
The rescue service mentioned Israeli tanks lined up exterior the hospital have been firing stay ammunition and smoke grenades on the folks inside. Raed al-Nims, a spokesperson for the help group, mentioned everybody was ordered to evacuate.
The Israeli army mentioned with out elaborating that its forces have been working within the space of the hospital however not inside it.
WEST BANK CRACKDOWN
Violence within the West Bank has additionally surged since Oct. 7, as Israel has cracked down on suspected fighters, killing greater than 380 Palestinians, in keeping with the Palestinian Health Ministry. Most have been killed in confrontations with Israeli forces throughout arrest raids or violent protests.
The army mentioned that in Tuesday’s hospital raid, forces killed Mohammed Jalamneh, 27, who it mentioned was planning an imminent assault. The two different males killed, brothers Basel and Mohammed Ghazawi, have been hiding contained in the hospital and have been concerned in assaults, the army mentioned.
The military assertion mentioned Jalamneh was armed with a pistol however made no point out of an change of fireplace.
Hamas claimed the three males as members, calling the operation “a cowardly assassination.”
Hospital spokesperson Tawfiq al-Shobaki mentioned there was no change of fireplace, and that Basel Ghazawi had been a affected person since October, with partial paralysis.
“What happened is a precedent,” he mentioned. “There was never an assassination inside a hospital. There were arrests and assaults, but not an assassination.”
Tuesday’s raid happened within the West Bank city of Jenin, lengthy a bastion of armed battle towards Israel and the frequent goal of Israeli raids, even earlier than the conflict started.
Israel captured the West Bank, together with the Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, within the 1967 Mideast conflict.
Israel withdrew troops and settlers from Gaza in 2005, however imposed a stifling blockade on the territory, together with Egypt, when Hamas got here to energy in a violent takeover in 2007. It maintains an open-ended occupation of the West Bank, the place greater than half 1,000,000 Israelis now stay in settlements.
The Palestinians declare these territories as a part of their future unbiased state, hopes for which have more and more dimmed for the reason that conflict started.
Lidman reported from Jerusalem and Shurafa from Deir al-Balah, Gaza Strip. Associated Press author Bassem Mroue contributed reporting from Beirut.
Follow AP’s protection of the Israel-Hamas conflict at https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war