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The Al-Quds Hospital run by the Palestine Red Crescent Society in Gaza City was hit by explosions and fire broke out, putting at risk the lives of around 100 patients and the medical staff caring for them.
"It is unacceptable that wounded people receiving treatment in hospitals are put at risk," said Jakob Kellenberger, the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), who just completed a three-day visit to the area that included a stop at Shifa Hospital in Gaza. He insisted that all parties to the conflict must comply with international humanitarian law. During meetings held in Tel Aviv this morning with Defence Minister Ehud Barak and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Mr Kellenberger insisted once again that the rules of international humanitarian law oblige the parties to a conflict to spare civilians and to protect medical personnel and medical facilities at all times. He requested systematic access to all parts of Gaza for humanitarian assistance, especially medical assistance.
Then, as now, Israeli officials initially claimed that Hamas militants had fired from inside the school. After the U.N. denied that charge, Israel said that its soldiers had fired at Hamas militants who were firing mortars near the school.