Middle East

Dozens more bodies found in mass grave at hospital in Khan Younis, in southern Gaza

From CNN's Ibrahim Dahman and Tim Lister

Emergency workers on Tuesday recovered at least 35 more bodies from a mass grave within the Nasser medical complex, in southern Gaza, after Israeli forces withdrew from the neighborhood earlier this month.

The total number of bodies found increased to 310, Colonel Yamen Abu Suleiman, the director of Civil Defense in Khan Younis, told CNN, adding that operations are ongoing.

Suleiman previously alleged that some of the bodies were found with hands and feet tied, “and there were signs of field executions. We do not know if they were buried alive or executed. Most of the bodies are decomposed.”

CNN is unable to verify Suleiman’s claims and cannot confirm the causes of death among the bodies being unearthed. Over the weekend, family members gathered at the hospital desperately searching for the bodies of loved ones who had been killed.

CNN has requested a response from the Israeli military to claims that its troops carried out DNA tests on scores of people who had been killed and temporarily buried within the hospital’s grounds in the search for hostages taken by Hamas and held in Gaza. The IDF reburied the bodies of Palestinians in a collective grave, relatives told CNN.

Stéphane Dujarric, the spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General, on Monday called reports of the mass graves unearthed at Nasser hospital “extremely troubling.”

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