Hamas committing ‘war crime’ by operating in Gaza hospital, Biden says

President Biden said Wednesday that Hamas was committing a “war crime” by using Gaza’s largest hospital, Al Shifa, to run its military operations and to store weapons.

“You have the first war crime being committed by Hamas by having their headquarters or military hidden under a hospital and that’s a fact. That’s what happened,” Mr. Biden told reporters during a press conference following his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The United States has repeatedly backed the Jewish state’s claim, backed in recent days by video evidence taken by conquering Israeli forces, that Hamas uses hospitals and schools in the Gaza Strip to hide military operations and hold hostages.

Hamas has always denied such claims.

Mr. Biden told reporters the U.S. has information confirming Israel’s assertions, but declined to say how American intelligence agencies reached their conclusions.

Israel forces have surrounded the Al Shifa hospital and have moved into the complex, which they say is necessary to stop Hamas militants. Earlier Wednesday, an Israel Defense Forces spokesperson showed off weapons he said were hidden inside the hospital.

Human rights advocates have condemned Israel’s actions saying the maneuver has condemned innocent Palestinian women and children to death because its denied them needed medical care. Some say that babies died in the siege because they were taken off incubators.

Mr. Biden defended Israel’s actions saying Hamas is bent on attacking the Jewish state, calling the decision to storm the hospital “a terrible dilemma.”

“I think that Israel is also taking risks themselves about their folks being killed going one-to-one through these hospital rooms, or hospital halls,” Mr. Biden said.

“But one thing that has been established is that Hamas does have headquarters, weapons, material below this hospital and I suspect others,” he said.

Under international law, hospitals are protected from military strikes but lose that status if they are used for military purposes.

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