Ex-Israeli defence minister shows Pakistani hospital in video targeting Hamas

Ex-Israeli defence minister shows Pakistani hospital in video targeting Hamas


JERUSALEM:

In a video now viewed thousands of times, a former Israeli defence minister shared a photo of Pakistan’s Shifa International Hospital, claiming it to be the Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza.

In the two-minute video posted on social media on May 20, Naftali Bennett is responding to celebrities who criticised Israel for killing Palestinian civilians.

“The ‘great philosophers’ of our age, Bella Hadid, John Oliver and Trevor Noah are slamming Israel for killing civilians,” Bennett said. “… I’d like to explain why innocent people are sometimes caught in the crossfire …”

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A photo of a hospital building with a signboard reading “Shifa” then appears in the background.

“Ever heard of Shifa hospital? It is the largest medical complex in Gaza. It’s also where Hamas’ [a Palestinian resistance group] headquarters is located …,” he said.

While Shifa International Hospital is a healthcare facility in Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital; Al-Shifa Hospital is the largest medical complex and central hospital in the blockaded Gaza Strip. It treated hundreds of people injured in the recent Israeli bombardment that continued for 11 days.

Tensions that started in East Jerusalem during the Muslim holy month of Ramazan spread to Gaza as a result of Israeli assaults on worshippers in the flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque compound and Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood.

At least 285 Palestinians, including women and children, were killed and more than 1,900 others injured in the Israeli onslaught, according to Palestinian health officials. An Egyptian-brokered cease-fire took effect on May 21.

Social media users in Pakistan quickly pointed out the blunder, but the video has not yet been deleted.

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