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EU's Borrell Wonders How Many Errors Israel Committed Before Killing Of 7 Aid Workers

10.04.2024 04:27

Foreign policy chief suggests four steps 'to urgently address the dire situation in Gaza and put an end to the war'

European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell on Tuesday reiterated his concern over the killing of seven food aid workers by Israel "in error" last week in Gaza as he recalled the number of UN aid workers killed by Israeli forces since Oct. 7.

Amid the dire humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, pressure on Israel and its Western allies is mounting over the crisis, especially the killing of the aid workers with the US-based charity World Central Kitchen (WCK).

The airstrike killed seven workers – three British nationals, an Australian, a Polish national, a US-Canadian dual citizen and a Palestinian.

Israel called it "a mistake," but WCK said it believed it was not an accident and that the Israeli army deliberately targeted the convoy.

Sharing a video clip from his interview with the BBC on X on Tuesday, Borrell suggested four steps -- a cease-fire, the freeing of hostages, increased humanitarian support and a political solution -- "to urgently address the dire situation in Gaza and put an end to the war."

Mentioning the killing of the seven WCK aid workers, he noted that Israel admitted that they had been killed in error, which "shocked many people around the world."

"But I wonder how many errors have been committed before on the killing of 140 humanitarian workers of the UN agency. We have been shocked maybe because they are Europeans or from Western countries."

The April 1 airstrike on the WCK workers has triggered strong condemnation around the globe and calls for accountability, with many, including WCK founder Jose Andres, disputing Israel's claim that it was a "mistake" and a case of "misidentification."

He said that seemingly the US has put more pressure on Israel, which has prompted it to reopen some aid routes in order to provide more humanitarian support to the starving population of Gaza, which "shows that it is possible to increase the flow of humanitarian support."

"Even eliminating Hamas in Gaza...it's not going to solve all problems," said Borrell, referring to the situation in the West Bank.

"We have to continue condemning what Hamas did. But at the same time, we have to prevent more civilian casualties. I don't know if it is a tactical withdrawal (from southern Gaza). We continue asking for not attacking Rafah."

Tensions have been running high across the West Bank since Israel launched a deadly military offensive against the Gaza Strip after a cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas last Oct. 7.

At least 459 Palestinians have since been killed and around 4,750 others injured by Israeli army fire in the occupied territory, according to the Health Ministry.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in January issued an interim ruling that ordered it to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza, where more than 33,000 people have been killed. -

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