You’ve probably already heard this news already: the secretary-general of the Red Crescent Society of the United Arab Emirates accusing Hamas of firing rockets from its field hospital, and attempting to prevent the distribution of humanitarian aid in the Gaza Strip.
Emirates Red Crescent staff came under attack from Israel in response to Hamas fire from a Gaza hospital where they were working, the charity’s secretary general said at the Crown Prince’s Majlis on Monday night.
Mohammed Al Falahi said his organisation felt sacrificed after Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, fired on Israelis from the field hospital bringing retaliation from the Israelis.
Mr Al Falahi said the charity had coordinated with the Red Cross to distribute aid in Gaza during the 2014 conflict “and we asked them to liaise with the Israeli forces so they don’t strike us”.
“While we were in the field hospital that the UAE built, we were surprised by – and this is the first that we have announced this – someone from Hamas instigating Israeli forces by launching locally made rockets from the field hospital”, he said.
Inevitably, the Israelis hit back. “This shows their [Hamas’s] wicked intentions and how they sacrificed us,” Mr Al Falahi said. “They always claim that the enemy targets humanitarian envoys but the betrayal came from them.”
He said as the team were leaving Gaza “after having raised the white flag, Hamas accused us of being spies, undercover foreign intelligence who were escaping”.
“And apparently they had informed extremist militias in Sinai and Sheikh Zuweid [in Egypt] that there was a group making their way there, so prepare for jihad against them.
“So Muslims fighting Muslims, who were giving humanitarian aid to Muslims. As we stopped at a grocery to buy something to eat, they started shooting at us.”
He said the same time they found that the militias had planted landmines in their path a few kilometres farther down the path.
“What hurts is that the betrayal came from our own people,” Mr Al Falahi told the majlis.
@LaneShari1 Do you honestly think these people, these fellow human beings, would use their own children as shields? Use your heart.
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) July 21, 2014
Heck, Hamas even admits to it.
Pro-Israel blogger Elder of Ziyon is skeptical about these allegations.
Not to defend Hamas, but these claims are a bit fishy.
I could not find any mention of the IDF attacking any field hospital, which would have been big news. The UAE facility was in Rafah. I went through the lists of alleged attacks on medical facilities in Rafah and couldn’t find any such report.
The story of Hamas tipping off Sinai militants to attack them and lay land mines strains credibility as well.
We know that Hamas fired from, and worked in, the vicinity of other hospitals and that they used ambulances to support terror attacks. Hamas is guilty of similar war crimes many times over. But this story has not yet checked out.
He is correct that there does not seem to have been any reported attack on a medical facility in Rafah. Although I am not sure I agree that the idea that Hamas tipped off Sinai terrorists “strains credibility” – terrorists do collaborate, after all.
But what I find really surprising about all of this is Hamas’ response to these claims.
They have been silent. No denial whatsoever. Compare to their response to the recent claim they built terror tunnels under a UN school – they denied it the very next day.
Press statement condemning UNRWA allegations about a resistance tunnel under a school in Gazahttps://t.co/HVwQGUNTVh
— Hamas Movement (@HamasInfoEn) June 10, 2017
Which begs the question: why are they not denying it?
Whether or not this silence constitutes an admission does not change the fact that Hamas does engage in this kind of despicable conduct. And more and more in the Arab world are turning against them.