IDF destroys Hamas tunnels ahead of ceasefire in Gaza

The IDF announced the destruction of Hamas tunnels in the Al-Shifa hospital area as part of operational preparations ahead of a four-day ceasefire

Gaza Strip
Gaza Strip / MAHMUD HAMSONIT HAMSONIT, CC BY 2.0 DEED

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced on Friday that they had destroyed several tunnels in the area of Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City. This action was part of their "operational preparation" directly before the onset of the ceasefire.

In the IDF statement, it is specified that not only tunnels were destroyed, but also some tunnel shafts in this area. It was also reported that Israeli forces continued to attack various targets on the last day and night before the ceasefire, although the exact number of such attacks is not specified.

Tunnels in the Al-Shifa Hospital Area

Previously, the IDF published video materials demonstrating new tunnels under Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza, which are claimed to belong to the Hamas group. These tunnels contain additional entrances and underground shelters.

One of the tunnels, previously discovered, runs under a part of the hospital known as the "Qatari" building, and includes command posts and shelters. A sealed door was found in it, behind which was an equipped room with air conditioning, a toilet, and a kitchen.

The IDF also discovered two more tunnel shafts near the hospital: one on the street and another in a building used as a classroom. In addition, weapons and evidence that hostages had previously been held there were found in the hospital.

Four-Day Ceasefire Between Israel and Hamas

Israel and Hamas began a four-day ceasefire, brokered with the mediation of Qatar. This ceasefire includes important conditions, such as the release of hostages and prisoners, as well as the organization of the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza.

According to the plan, 13 hostages held in Gaza will be released first, after which Israel will release an unspecified number of Palestinian prisoners.

During the four days of the ceasefire, at least 50 women and children are planned to be released, while about 190 people will remain in captivity of Palestinian terrorists. It is also expected that 150 Palestinian prisoners, mainly women and minors, some of whom are convicted of attempted murder, will be released during this period.

The ceasefire also includes a condition for the release of additional hostages, with Israel agreeing to extend the ceasefire by one day for every ten additional hostages released by Hamas.

Besides, the ceasefire provides for the delivery of fuel and humanitarian goods to Gaza. This is the first ceasefire since the beginning of the war initiated by Hamas on October 7, which resulted in the death of about 1,200 residents and guests of Israel, most of them civilians. Also, on that day, Hamas took 240 hostages.

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