First Thing: Israeli forces withdraw from Gaza City’s al-Shifa hospital

Good morning.

With much of Gaza City’s al-Shifa hospital in ruins, Israeli forces say they have withdrawn from the area after a two-week operation.

Israel has described the raid as one of the most successful operations of the nearly six-month war, with the Israeli military saying it had killed about 200 militants in fighting in and around al-Shifa, and that it seized weapons and valuable intelligence.

The scene left behind was one of devastation: windows blown out, concrete walls blackened; and volunteers carrying away shrouded corpses across the sandy wasteland, Agence France-Presse reported.

The World Health Organization said 21 patients had died in the past two weeks and that more than 100 others requiring care needed to be urgently moved to safety amid unsanitary conditions.

“Among the patients are four children and 28 critical patients lacking necessary means of care – no diapers, urine bags, water to clean wounds. Many have infected wounds and are dehydrated,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO director general, wrote on X on Sunday.

“Since yesterday only one bottle of water remains for every 15 people. Contagious diseases are spreading due to extremely unsanitary conditions, and a lack of water.”

  • Six months later, how are Israelis feeling about the Israel-Hamas war? Tens of thousands of people across Israel joined the families of hostages at the weekend to protest and call for the removal of Benjamin Netanyahu, labelling the Israeli prime minister as an obstacle in a deal to bring home those held captive.

  • What is the future of the Gaza Strip? Experts and people in the territory fear that Gaza is facing deepening anarchy as the last remnants of civil order break down, leaving a vacuum increasingly filled by armed gangs, clans, powerful families and criminals.

Seven children wounded in Indianapolis mass shooting

Seven children between the ages of 12 and 17 were wounded outside a shopping mall in Indianapolis, in the latest mass shooting in the US. Police believe more than one gun was used in the shooting, but no arrests have been made. Police did not immediately have any suspects.

“Once again, we have a situation in which young people are resolving conflict with firearms, and it has to stop,” said Tanya Terry, the deputy chief of the Indianapolis metropolitan police department. “Conflict should not lead to somebody pulling out a gun and trying to resolve it. The consequences are eternal.”

In other news …

  • Turkey’s main opposition party swept to victory in local elections on Sunday, in an unexpected blow to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s rule.

  • Crews of engineers have begun the dangerous and intricate job of removing the mangled wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge from the Patapsco River outside Baltimore.

  • A total solar eclipse will sweep across the Pacific Ocean, Mexico, the US and Canada on 8 April.

  • A Chinese scientist who was imprisoned for his role in creating the world’s first genetically edited babies says he has returned to his laboratory to work on the treatment of Alzheimer’s and other genetic diseases.

  • A Republican congressman has said the US should ensure Gaza is subjected to nuclear bombing in the way “Nagasaki and Hiroshima” were at the end of the second world war, comments that have drawn condemnation from progressive political quarters and civil rights groups.

Stat of the day: 8% of Americans strongly believe in baseless ‘chemtrails’ conspiracy theory

The Tennessee state senate passed a bill this month endorsing the baseless concept of chemtrails – the belief that the cloudy white lines left behind by planes high in the sky are chemicals being released into the atmosphere at the behest of the government, or shadowy private organizations, for anything from modifying the weather to controlling a population’s minds. There is also a movement to pass a similar law in Pennsylvania.

“There’s no such thing as chemtrails,” said Alan Robock, a climate science professor at Rutgers University. “There’s no evidence that anybody is pumping chemicals into airplanes. If this was a huge [government] conspiracy to do those things, do you think nobody would sort of, tell on them?” he said.

Don’t miss this: Berta Cáceres’ murder, a decade later

In March 2016, Honduran Indigenous and environmental leader Berta Cáceres was murdered for her opposition to an internationally financed dam – three employees of the energy company behind the construction project have since been convicted in her killing. But more than 11 years later, Honduras remains the most dangerous country for nature defenders in the world, with 70 environmental activists killed since Cáceres’s murder. An estimated 90% of violent incidents towards human rights defender in Honduras go unpunished.

… or this: the cost of Indonesia’s brand new city

With Jakarta rapidly sinking, construction has begun on Nusantara, Indonesia’s planned new capital in the province of East Kalimantan. But critics say the development is too ambitious and rushed, and warn it could come with high costs, not only to the state, but also to the surrounding environment and local Indigenous communities.

“Nusantara is changing the shape of everything,” said Pandi, a member of the Indigenous Balik community.

Climate check: The future of energy storage

While the focus of storage for the energy industry has been mainly on giant conventional batteries, there’s growing interest in storing energy in the form of heat. A number of startups are now looking to form batteries out of air, salt and bricks because those materials are good at holding in warmth.

Last Thing: Japan’s imperial family enters the age of social media

Japan’s royal family is now on Instagram, marking a shift in the agency’s careful management of the family’s senior members. The initial images released follow a steady course favored by other royal families around the world – a dignified attendance at a medical awards ceremony, a bonsai exhibition and a meeting with the president and first lady of Kenya.

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