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  HOME PAGE 20/04/2024 22:07 
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US To Continue To Urge Israel To Protect Humanitarian Aid Workers: Pentagon

02.04.2024 23:57

'Our hearts go out to those who lost their lives in that strike. These are humanitarian aid workers who are providing life saving aid to Palestinians in Gaza,' says Pentagon spokeswoman.

The US will continue to urge Israel to protect humanitarian aid workers, the Pentagon said Tuesday.

"We're going to continue to urge them to protect innocent Palestinians, to protect humanitarian aid workers, and that's coming from the highest levels of government," spokeswoman Sabrina Singh told reporters.

The US will continue to push the Israelis to uphold humanitarian laws to ensure that "they are doing everything possible to protect innocent lives in Gaza," she added.

Her remarks came one day after seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen (WCK) were killed in an Israeli strike in the Gaza Strip. They were nationals of Australia, Poland, the UK and Palestine, as well as a US-Canada dual citizen.

The Israeli military said it was conducting a thorough review at the highest levels to understand the circumstances of the "tragic" incident.

"Our hearts go out to those who lost their lives in that strike. These are humanitarian aid workers who are providing life-saving aid to Palestinians in Gaza. And the Israelis have taken responsibility for that strike. They are conducting an investigation," said Singh, adding that the Pentagon welcomed the "immediate" investigation into the incident.

The US wants the investigation to be "independent, to be able to gather the facts and to make sure that something like this never happens again," said Singh, adding that Washington has confidence that the Israelis "can do this, and learn from their mistakes and understand and better plan for future operations, whether it be in Gaza or elsewhere."

She said the Pentagon has been "very consistent and repetitive" in conversations with Tel Aviv about the protection of the innocent lives in Gaza.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since an Oct. 7 cross-border attack by Hamas which killed less than 1,200 people.

More than 32,900 Palestinians have since been killed and 75,494 injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities. Israel has imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip, leaving its population, particularly residents of northern Gaza, on the verge of starvation.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza's population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water, and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel is accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which last week asked Israel to do more to prevent famine in Gaza. -

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