Thousands Flee from Gaza Hospitals Following Strikes

by Ethan Kim
Gaza Hospital Exodus

In the wake of reported overnight strikes at and near Gaza City’s main hospital, thousands of Palestinians sought refuge in the south on Friday. This exodus, spurred by the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict, adds to the number of individuals fleeing the intense urban combat in the north, particularly near hospitals. The death toll in the territory has now exceeded 11,000, as confirmed by Gaza officials.

The pursuit of safety throughout the besieged Gaza Strip has intensified as Israel steps up its attacks on Gaza City, the territory’s most populous area. The Israel Defense Forces claim that Hamas has embedded its military infrastructure within the city’s hospitals and residential areas. Following the unexpected incursion on October 7, Israel has committed to dismantling Hamas.

In recent days, tens of thousands have moved south, facing the threat of continuous bombardment and harsh conditions. The strikes on at least four hospitals in northern Gaza highlight the risks for the thousands who have taken refuge in these facilities, believing them to be safe havens.

Hospital Strikes Trigger Mass Departures

Early on Friday, Shifa Hospital, the largest in Gaza, was struck in areas including its courtyard and obstetrics department. These strikes, documented in videos capturing the chaos and calls for ambulances, have led to significant casualties and injuries. The Israeli army contends that Hamas uses hospitals for military purposes, a claim both the group and hospital staff refute.

With displaced Palestinians, numbering up to 60,000, seeking shelter in the Shifa hospital complex, the recent strikes prompted a substantial number of them to flee southward. Many left around 10 a.m., carrying their belongings and heading towards the southern regions. Among those who remained were mainly those unable to move or unsure of where to go.

Impact on Medical Facilities and Civilians

Shifa Hospital, already overwhelmed with thousands of wounded and operating under limited resources, faces further strain. The hospital’s director, Mohammed Abu Selmia, expressed the impossibility of evacuating such a large number of patients due to the lack of alternative safe locations.

Gaza health officials reported that strikes near four hospitals occurred overnight and into early Friday. These attacks resulted in casualties and disrupted critical medical services. For instance, a strike near the Al-Nasr Medical Center led to its closure, severely impacting pediatric care in northern Gaza.

Civilian Exodus and International Response

The mass exodus from Gaza City and northern areas has led tens of thousands to travel south along Salah al-Din road, despite the absence of transport means. The Israeli military has announced temporary windows for civilians to evacuate, though these have been criticized by international observers as inadequate and inhumane.

As of now, more than 11,070 Palestinians, predominantly women and minors, have lost their lives since the onset of the conflict. The United States has acknowledged the significant civilian casualties, urging for greater efforts to minimize harm. Israeli casualties primarily occurred during the initial Hamas attack, with continued rocket fire from Palestinian militants.

This report also includes contributions from Bassem Mroue, Sarah El Deeb, David Rising, Lee Keath, Julia Frankel, and Josef Federman, with reporting from Beirut, Bangkok, Cairo, and Jerusalem.

For comprehensive coverage, visit Big Big News.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Gaza Hospital Exodus

Why did thousands of Palestinians flee from Gaza hospitals?

Thousands of Palestinians fled from Gaza hospitals, particularly the main hospital in Gaza City, due to overnight strikes and ongoing urban combat in the area. These incidents have heightened fears for safety among the civilians, leading to a mass exodus towards the south.

What are the implications of strikes near hospitals in Gaza?

Strikes near hospitals in Gaza have led to increased casualties and disruptions in medical services. Hospitals like Shifa, overwhelmed with wounded patients, are facing challenges in providing care amid limited resources and power supply.

How many people have been displaced in the Gaza Strip?

Over 11,000 Palestinians, mostly women and minors, have been killed, and many more displaced due to the Israel-Hamas conflict. The recent strikes and the ensuing exodus have contributed to the significant increase in the number of displaced individuals.

What has been the response of international organizations to the situation in Gaza?

International organizations have expressed concern over the civilian casualties and the impact on medical facilities in Gaza. The U.N. and other bodies have criticized the temporary evacuation windows provided by the Israeli military as inadequate and inhumane.

What is the current situation in Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest hospital?

Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest, has been overwhelmed with thousands of wounded, operating with minimal power and medical supplies. Recent strikes have exacerbated the situation, leading to a mass departure of the displaced people sheltering there.

More about Gaza Hospital Exodus

  • Gaza Conflict Overview
  • Shifa Hospital Situation
  • Israel-Hamas Conflict Updates
  • Gaza Civilian Exodus Report
  • International Responses to Gaza Strikes
  • Health Crisis in Gaza Hospitals
  • Palestinian Displacement Analysis
  • Israel’s Military Strategy in Gaza
  • Humanitarian Impact of Gaza War
  • Gaza Health Ministry Statements

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Lisa Smith November 10, 2023 - 11:55 pm

This article highlights the dire situation, but there’s more to be said about the international response, or lack thereof? Where’s the global outcry?

Mark Johnson November 11, 2023 - 12:02 am

really shocking to see how many people are affected by this, it’s like there’s no safe place left in Gaza, can’t imagine what they’re going through..

Sara Evans November 11, 2023 - 4:03 am

It’s heartbreaking to read about the hospitals being overwhelmed. These places should be safe havens, but now they’re in the line of fire, what’s happening to our humanity?

Tom Green November 11, 2023 - 5:26 am

The numbers are just staggering… over 11,000 dead? It’s hard to fathom. It seems like the strikes are not just targeting militants but also harming civilians.


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