Israel-Gaza updates: IDF says it exposed Hamas tunnel under Shifa Hospital

World Health Organization officials visited the hospital in Gaza on Saturday.

Thousands of people have died and thousands more have been injured since the militant group Hamas launched an unprecedented surprise attack on Israel on Oct. 7 and Israel retaliated with a bombing campaign and total siege of the neighboring Gaza Strip, leaving the region on the verge of all-out war.

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What we know about the conflict

The latest outbreak of war between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that governs the Gaza Strip, has passed the four-month mark.

In the Gaza Strip, at least 30,228 people have been killed and 71,377 others have been wounded by Israeli forces since Oct. 7, according to Gaza's Hamas-controlled Ministry of Health.

In Israel, at least 1,200 people have been killed and 6,900 others have been injured by Hamas and other Palestinian militants since Oct. 7, according to the Israel Defense Forces.

There has also been a surge in violence in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Israeli forces have killed at least 395 people in the territory since Oct. 7, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

The ongoing war began after Hamas-led militants launched an unprecedented incursion into southern Israel from neighboring Gaza via land, sea and air. Scores of people were killed while more than 200 others were taken hostage, according to Israeli authorities. The Israeli military subsequently launched retaliatory airstrikes followed by a ground invasion of Gaza, a 140-square-mile territory where more than 2 million Palestinians have lived under a blockade imposed by Israel and supported by Egypt since Hamas came to power in 2007. Gaza, unlike Israel, has no air raid sirens or bomb shelters.

IDF says it exposed tunnel under Shifa Hospital

Israel Defense Forces troops exposed a 180-foot tunnel 32 feet deep underneath the Shifa Hospital, the IDF and Israel Securities Authority (ISA) said in a joint statement Sunday.

"A deep staircase leads to the entrance of the tunnel shaft, which consists of various defense means including a blast-proof door and a firing hole," the statement continues. "This type of door is used by the Hamas terrorist organization to block Israeli forces from entering the command centers and the underground assets belonging to Hamas. The tunnel shaft was uncovered in the area of the hospital underneath a shed alongside a vehicle containing numerous weapons including RPGs, explosives and Kalashnikov rifles.

"IDF and ISA forces are continuing to uncover the route of the tunnel," the statement adds.

The IDF said it expects to find more tunnels and underground facilities, and that the operation is ongoing and will take some time. About 300 people remain in the hospital, according to the IDF.

-ABC News' Yael Benaya

31 premature babies evacuated from Al-Shifa Hospital: WHO

The World Health Organization confirmed earlier claims by the Palestinian Health Ministry that 31 "very sick" babies were safely transported from Al-Shifa Hospital to another hospital in southern Gaza on Sunday.

The premature infants were evacuated to the Emirates Hospital in Rafah, WHO officials said.

The babies were "clinging to life," the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) said in a statement, and their "condition was rapidly deteriorating."

The babies are expected to be transferred to another hospital in Egypt, said Dr. Ashraf al Qwadwa, a spokesperson for the Palestinian Health Ministry. He said nine premature babies have died since the start of a fuel crisis in Gaza prompted by the ongoing conflict.

Six health workers at the Al Shifa Hospital and 10 family members of staff there were also evacuated on Sunday along with the babies, according to the WHO statement, adding that further missions are planned to "urgently transport" the remaining patients and health staff out of the hospital.

-ABC News' Nasser Atta

Houthi militants hijack cargo ship in Red Sea, IDF says

A British-owned cargo ship operated by a Japanese company was hijacked by Houthi militants near Yemen in the southern Red Sea, officials said Sunday.

The Israel Defense Forces released a statement describing the hijacking as a "very grave incident of global consequence."

"The ship departed Turkey on its way to India, staffed by civilians of various nationalities, not including Israelis," the IDF said. "It is not an Israeli ship."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office called the incident an "Iranian attack on an international ship," adding the vessel was "hijacked on [an] Iranian whim by the Houthi militia in Yemen."

Netanyahu's office confirmed that no Israelis were on the ship, saying the 25-person crew was of different nationalities, including Ukrainians, Bulgarians, Filipinos and Mexicans.

The Houthi militant group is expected to hold a news conference, a spokesperson for the group said.

A spokesman for Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi military, Yahya Sarea, had said earlier Sunday the group would target all ships owned or operated by Israeli companies or carrying the Israeli flag, according to the group's Telegram channel.

-ABC News' Nasser Atta, Jordana Miller and Dana Savir

Negotiations to free hostages in 'very sensitive stage': White House official

Negotiations to free the more than 200 hostages believed to be held by Hamas in Gaza have "reached a very sensitive stage" as some of the key areas of disagreement have "narrowed," a top White House official told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday.

Jon Finer, deputy national security adviser to the White House, suggested that a breakthrough in the negotiations could be imminent.

"These talks have clearly reached a very sensitive stage," Finer told "This Week" co-anchor Martha Raddatz. "We’re following this minute by minute, hour by hour, and have been over a number of weeks. And this is an incredibly high priority for all of us in this administration up to and including, certainly, the president."

Amid new reporting by The Washington Post that an agreement is on the verge of being struck for dozens of captives to be released in exchange for a pause in the fighting, Finer said progress was being made but cautioned that the work was not done.

-ABC News' Tal Axelrod

Israel claims to have evidence of Hamas headquarters at hospital

Israeli military officials brought several journalists, including ABC's Matt Gutman, into the Al-Rantisi Hospital inside Gaza, which had been hit with artillery.

The hospital, Gaza's sole children's hospital, was allegedly a Hamas command center, Israel’s chief military spokesperson Daniel Hagari, who led the tour, claimed.

The hospital was surrounded by Israeli tanks from Thursday into Friday, the director of Al-Rantisi Children’s Hospital said on Friday.

Inside the basement of the hospital, which officials said has been evacuated, were abandoned AK-47s, grenades and what Hagari said were suicide vests. In another room of the basement was a chair where Hagari claims a hostage was kept.

The spokesperson said the Israeli military was set to detonate the grenades and vests they claim they found inside and a forensic team was going to probe the hospital for more evidence.

The tour came after the hospital's resources deteriorated due to nearby attacks according to UNICEF.

The hospital’s operations almost ceased between Thursday and Friday, according to UNICEF.

By Friday, Al-Rantisi Hospital had only a small generator powering the intensive care and neonatal intensive care units, UNICEF said.

-ABC News' Matt Gutman