New information by Hamas terrorist operatives captured by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Tuesday revealed the extent to which the terror group uses hospitals and innocent civilians as human shields when launching strikes against Israeli forces.
According to videos released by the IDF, several Hamas terrorists under captured and under interrogation revealed how Hamas hides weapons under bed mattresses and acts as doctors and nurses to avoid capture.
A senior IDF official said on the social media website Telegram that terrorists were interrogated in Israel after being captured during a ground operation in early November.
One of the captives, Abdelrahaman Alaa Ibrahim Samur, told an off-camera interrogator that around 100 Hamas operatives “took control” of Rantisi Hospital in Gaza for about five days to engage in terror attacks.
“They were organized, with several tents, with each group of operatives by themselves [in groups of] four, five of them sitting together, all of them around the hospital,” Samur said.
Samur also stated that Hamas terrorists operated from the hospital because it was a “secure place,” and the Israeli forces could not locate them there.
“No one would suspect them,” Samur added. “It was better than operating from their homes,” he said.
Another captured Hamas terrorist fighter said he was side the al-Shifa Hospital, one of Hamas’s largest hospital bases in Gaza.
“The doctors were furious because Hamas operatives and operatives of other terrorist organizations were inside the hospital,” the terrorist said.
The same terrorist fighter said there were around 100 terrorists at the hospital, including members of the Iranian-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
“They [Hamas operatives] dressed as nursing staff, but they were not nurses or doctors,” the Hamas terror fighter said. “Hamas operatives dressed as medical staff in order to blend in within the hospital wards, even in the ICU!”
Hamuda Riad Asad Shamalah, another captured Hamas terrorist fighter, said that he was hiding in the Red Crescent building in Gaza with his family for three weeks. Shamalah stated that around 40,000 people were in the building, with 20,000 in the main building, where he was with his wife and daughters.
Hamas fighters have hidden rockets and guns by wrapping them in mattresses “on a daily basis,” Shamalah said. He noted that the terrorists used fear tactics to engage in their activities with impunity.
According to Shamalah, Hamas chose the Red Crescent as a base of operations, given the large number of people in the place, serving as a “protection for them.”
“We became their human shields. It is obvious that the IDF would not strike a place with 40,000 people in it,” Shamalah added.
“If they want to fight, use the battlefield, it’s not okay that they used a place of shelter with so many people in it,” he said. “If one of their rockets, for example, would explode, it could kill 50 of us or more.”