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‘Israel has not done enough,’ Biden ‘outraged’ over IDF strike on humanitarian aid convoy in Gaza that killed 7

US pledges commitment to continue delivering humanitarian aid to Palestinians during conflict

U.S. President Joe Biden at the Chavis Community Center in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S., March 26, 2024. (Photo: Elizabeth Frantz/File Photo/REUTERS)

U.S. President Joe Biden on Tuesday said that Israel is not doing enough to protect aid workers in Gaza, after the accidental killing of seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen (WCK) in strikes by Israeli forces Monday night. 

Biden said he was “outraged and heartbroken” at the deaths of the aid workers, whom he said were “brave and selfless.” 

“I am outraged and heartbroken by the deaths of seven humanitarian workers from World Central Kitchen, including one American, in Gaza yesterday. They were providing food to hungry civilians in the middle of a war. They were brave and selfless. Their deaths are a tragedy.” 

Acknowledging that Israeli authorities have called for a “thorough investigation” into the incident, Biden said it “must be swift, it must bring accountability, and its findings must be made public.” 

The U.S. president accused Israel of carelessness in its conduct during Gaza operations. 

“Even more tragically, this is not a stand-alone incident,” the president said. “This conflict has been one of the worst in recent memory in terms of how many aid workers have been killed.” 

Biden insinuated that the IDF’s actions are partly responsible for the humanitarian crisis in Gaza. 

“This is a major reason why distributing humanitarian aid in Gaza has been so difficult – because Israel has not done enough to protect aid workers trying to deliver desperately needed help to civilians,” Biden stated. 

“Incidents like yesterday’s simply should not happen. Israel has also not done enough to protect civilians.” 

The White House pledged to continue aid operations in Gaza while working toward a ceasefire as part of a hostage release deal. 

“The United States will continue to do all we can to deliver humanitarian assistance to Palestinian civilians in Gaza, through all available means,” Biden continued.

“I will continue to press Israel to do more to facilitate that aid. And we are pushing hard for an immediate ceasefire as part of a hostage deal. I have a team in Cairo working on this right now.” 

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant held an assessment with IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi and senior defense officials on Tuesday to review the incident involving the killing of seven aid workers.

Halevi called the event a "mistake of misidentification" that should not have happened.

"I want to be very clear—the strike was not carried out with the intention of harming WCK aid workers. It was a mistake that followed a misidentification–at night during a war in very complex conditions. It should not have happened."

Gallant described the incident as “an unfortunate incident that must be thoroughly investigated, lessons learned and implemented,” and committed to promptly establishing a joint operations center of the Southern Command with international aid organizations in the Gaza Strip to prevent it from happening again. In addition, the defense minister instructed the IDF to take action to “strengthen the aid distribution mechanisms by allocating appropriate resources.” 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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