Friday , April 19 2024

America 'angry' over killing of aid workers in Israeli airstrike in Gaza, Britain calls envoy

Washington: The Joe Biden administration is outraged and expressed deep disappointment over the Israeli airstrike that resulted in the tragic deaths of seven aid workers in Gaza, a White House official said on Tuesday. President Joe Biden also spoke to Jose Andres, founder of the affected organization, and expressed his condolences. “We are outraged to learn of the IDF attack yesterday that killed several civilian humanitarian workers at World Central Kitchen, who are working tirelessly to feed hungry people in Gaza and, frankly, around the world.” “We offer our deepest condolences to their families and loved ones,” White House national security spokesman John Kirby said at a news briefing Tuesday.

Kirby emphasized that both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli Defense Forces have promised to investigate “in a swift and thorough manner.” “We hope those findings will be made public and appropriate accountability will be held,” Kirby said. He said that preliminary investigation has already been completed. Furthermore, Kirby highlighted that one of the victims was a dual national United States citizen.

“I am outraged and saddened by the death of seven World Central Kitchen humanitarian workers, including an American, in Gaza yesterday,” President Biden said in a post on Twitter. Incidents like yesterday should not happen at all…”

Seven aid workers from the non-profit organization World Central Kitchen were tragically killed in an Israeli military strike on Monday night as they were delivering food to hungry civilians in Gaza. The activists were traveling in two armored cars and another vehicle bearing the charity's logo, CNN reported. Those killed included three British citizens, an American-Canadian citizen, individuals from Australia and Poland, and a Palestinian.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu acknowledged the incident, saying that “innocent people” were killed “unintentionally” by the military. The Israel Defense Forces pledged “at the highest level.”

Meanwhile, World Central Kitchen founder Jose Andres criticized the Israeli government, saying it “needs to stop this indiscriminate killing.” Israeli President Isaac Herzog apologized to Andres and expressed condolences to the families of the aid workers. He assured a thorough investigation into this tragedy.

According to a post from the Presidency on “The President reiterated Israel's commitment to ensuring a thorough investigation of the tragedy,” the post said.

Britain summoned the Israeli ambassador

Meanwhile, the United Kingdom has taken a tough stance and summoned the Israeli ambassador in London for decisive discussions following the tragic killing of World Central Kitchen aid workers, including three British citizens, in Gaza, CNN reports. British Development and Africa Minister Andrew Mitchell called on the Israeli ambassador “to unequivocally condemn the government’s horrific murder of seven World Central Kitchen aid workers, including three British citizens,” Andrew Mitchell, the British development and Africa minister, said in a Foreign Office press release.

Israel-Hamas conflict

The ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas has proven particularly deadly for aid workers, with the incident being one of the deadliest in two decades, according to the Aid Worker Safety Database. In less than six months, nearly 200 aid workers have been killed in Gaza, more than the number of casualties in other conflicts such as Afghanistan, Syria and South Sudan over the past 20 years, CNN reports.

Aid worker protection data includes workers from various humanitarian organisations, including the United Nations. Since 7 October, more than 170 UN staff members are reported killed, the highest number of casualties among UN personnel in history.

Additionally, according to the United Nations report on March 29, fifteen Palestine Red Crescent Society workers and volunteers lost their lives, CNN reported.