Shifa Hospital Narrative Battle Rages, Israeli Families' Appeal for Hostages: Day 45 of Hamas War
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JERUSALEM, Israel – As fighting continues on the ground in Gaza, the information war over whether or not the Shifa Hospital was used as a terror hub has become a main focus of the battle Hamas is waging against Israel.
Nevertheless, the Israel Defense Forces say they have proof that IDF soldier, 19-year-old Corporal Noa Marciano, who was found dead in Gaza, was taken hostage alive during the massacre and held next to Shifa Hospital. Hamas is claiming that Marciano was killed by IDF bombing in Gaza, but IDF spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hargari says that's not true.
“According to the intelligence we have in our hands, concrete intelligence: Hamas terrorists took Noa into Shifa Hospital where she was murdered quickly,” Hagari said.
The IDF also showed video of two other hostages.
“I will now share concrete evidence of hostages - one from Nepal, one from Thailand," Hargari stated, "taken from Israel during the Hamas massacre on October 7th. After ruthlessly massacring and taking people hostage, the terrorists fled into Shifa Hospital."
This is WHY Hamas brought hostages to the Shifa Hospital after the October 7 massacre.— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) November 21, 2023
Why is Hamas still holding over 200 civilians hostage 44 days later?
This is the question the world should be asking. pic.twitter.com/P8EL5Z8wRT
At 10:55 a.m. on October 7th, footage shows a gunman also brought another hostage into the hospital on a stretcher. Hargari says the IDF doesn’t know where that person is now and that the individual still needs to be rescued.
OPERATIONAL UPDATE: IDF and ISA forces revealed a significant 55-meter-long terrorist tunnel, 10 meters underneath the Shifa Hospital complex during an intelligence-based operation.— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) November 19, 2023
The tunnel entrance contains various defense mechanisms, such as a blast-proof door and a firing… pic.twitter.com/tU4J6BD4ZG
Amid the disputes around Shifa, the Associated Press also reported that 31 premature Palestinian babies were evacuated to Egypt. Meanwhile, both the U.S. and Qatar indicated the sides are inching toward a deal on hostages. According to press reports, at least 50 Israeli hostages would be freed in groups over a five-day pause in the fighting.
“We believe that we are closer than we have been to reaching a final agreement, but on an issue as sensitive as this and as challenging as this, the mantra that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed really does apply,” Deputy National Security Adviser Jon Finer told CBS Face the Nation.
Thousands of Israelis walked up the highway to Jerusalem on Saturday in support of the families of the hostages.
In a weekend televised address to the nation, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he and all of Israel were walking with them.
“Concerning the hostages, there are many unsubstantiated rumors, many incorrect reports. I would like to make it clear: As of now, there has been no deal. But I want to promise: when there is something to say – we will report to you about it,” Netanyahu pledged.
The prime minister and members of the war cabinet are due to meet with representatives of the hostages’ families this evening.
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