Sources: Hamas Leaders Hiding in Basement of Israel-built Hospital in Gaza

Shin Bet Chief says militants hiding in Shifa Hospital because they know it will not be targeted by Israel.

Amos Harel
Amos Harel
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Amos Harel
Amos Harel

Senior Hamas officials in Gaza are hiding out in a "bunker" built by Israel, intelligence officials suspect: Many are believed to be in the basements of the Shifa Hospital complex in Gaza City, which was refurbished during Israel's occupation of the Gaza Strip.

Shifa, the coastal strip's largest hospital, was built while Gaza was under Egyptian rule, before 1967.

During the mid-1980s the building underwent massive refurbishment as part of a showcase project to improve the living conditions of residents.

Millions were invested in the project, which was overseen by Shmuel Goren, the coordinator for activities in the territories at the time.

The Israeli civil administration in the territories constructed the hospital complex's Building Number 2, which has a large cement basement that housed the hospital's laundry and various administrative services.

During a cabinet meeting a week ago, Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin said senior Hamas officials found refuge in the hospital basement because they know Israel would not target it, due to the patients in the upper floors. Palestinian sources told Haaretz that not all the senior Hamas leaders are hiding in one place.

Rather, they have spread out, and some are constantly changing locations. Some of the bunkers they are using were linked by tunnels Hamas built in recent years.

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