War in the Middle East: Israel's army: Did not attack aid convoy

While the exact circumstances of the deadly disaster when an aid convoy arrived in the Gaza Strip remain unclear, Israel is facing massive accusations.

War in the Middle East: Israel's army: Did not attack aid convoy

While the exact circumstances of the deadly disaster when an aid convoy arrived in the Gaza Strip remain unclear, Israel is facing massive accusations. French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his outrage on the platform

Palestinian UN Ambassador Riad Mansour accused Israel of deliberately killing Palestinians. Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari rejected the allegations: "There was no attack by the Israeli military on the aid convoy." The UN Security Council in New York was initially unable to agree on a common statement at a meeting.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said: "I am horrified by the news of another bloodbath among the civilian population in Gaza, who are desperately waiting for humanitarian aid," Borrell said late Thursday evening on the X (formerly Twitter) platform. These deaths are “completely unacceptable.” Withholding food aid from people is a serious violation of international humanitarian law. Borrell did not explicitly assign blame in the article.

USA: Will push for answers

The US government is in contact with the Israeli government about the incident and is demanding answers. It is the US understanding that an investigation is ongoing, said US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller. “We will closely monitor this investigation and push for answers.” There is no reliable information about what happened, said Miller. The “tragedy” could make negotiations for a ceasefire and the release of the hostages held by the Islamist Hamas more complicated.

The spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres, Stephane Dujarric, said about the incident that they do not know all the facts and are aware that there are different accounts. “There will be a time of responsibility,” Dujarric said.

Palestinian UN Ambassador: Army targeted killing

According to the health authority in the Gaza Strip, which is controlled by the Islamist Hamas, more than a hundred people were killed and several hundred injured in the incident. According to Palestinian UN Ambassador Mansur, thousands of people had gathered in northern Gaza as aid arrived.

"And then suddenly the Israeli army started shooting at them, and according to the information we have, dozens of them have bullets in their heads. It's not like shooting into the sky to hold people back when there was confusion and chaos . It was deliberately targeted and killed," Mansur said in New York. His claims could initially not be verified independently, nor could the contradictory statements from the Israeli side.

Israel's army: Did not shoot at those seeking help

The Israeli military presented the process completely differently. In the morning, the army coordinated a truck convoy with humanitarian aid that was supposed to reach residents in the north of the sealed-off coastal strip, said army spokesman Hagari. When they arrived, numerous people rushed onto the trucks and there was a chaotic crowd. "Some started violently pushing and trampling others to death and looted the humanitarian supplies," the army spokesman said.

Another spokesman for the Israeli military, Peter Lerner, told CNN that, according to initial findings, a group of people approached Israeli soldiers a short time later. The military then fired warning shots into the air. However, the group continued to approach the soldiers and posed a threat, whereupon the soldiers opened fire.

According to Israeli media reports, they were said to have targeted the legs. A handful of people were injured in the incident, Lerner said. The incident is being investigated. Hagari also emphasized: "We did not shoot anyone seeking help or the humanitarian convoy, neither on the ground nor from the air."

France's Foreign Ministry: Shelling cannot be justified

"The Israeli military's shelling of civilians trying to obtain food is unjustifiable," the French Foreign Ministry said in a statement. France expects the serious incident to be fully clarified. The government in Egypt had previously accused Israel of opening fire on the waiting crowd. Saudi Arabia and Jordan also criticized Israel for the incident.

The US State Department spokesman emphasized that what happened shows why a quick agreement on a ceasefire and the release of the hostages in the hands of the Islamist Hamas is necessary. The US would be “very committed to reaching an agreement,” said Miller.

Netanyahu: Continue war until victory

According to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli government is also making tireless efforts to free the hostages. However, it is too early to know whether an agreement will be reached on the release of the abductees and a ceasefire in the Gaza war, said Netanyahu.

One of his central demands is to obtain a list with the names of all hostages who would be released as part of a deal. He has not received this yet. A breakthrough in the negotiations and an agreement in the coming days are therefore initially uncertain, he said. The army will continue the war against Hamas until victory.

Federal government increases humanitarian aid

In view of the suffering of the people in Gaza, the federal government is increasing humanitarian aid by a further 20 million euros. Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) announced this in Berlin. However, this sum is far from enough. The number of trucks bringing life-saving food, medicine and other aid to Gaza has fallen sharply in recent weeks.

"This is unacceptable. The Israeli government must immediately allow safe and unhindered access for humanitarian aid," demanded the minister. UN Secretary-General Guterres said: "The desperate civilians in Gaza urgently need help, including those in the besieged north, where the United Nations has been unable to provide assistance for more than a week."

What is important today

As the investigation into the aid convoy disaster in the Gaza Strip continues, fighting continues relentlessly in the coastal area. In the indirect negotiations for a ceasefire, the positions of the warring parties continue to diverge widely. There is no end in sight to the horror and suffering for the hundreds of thousands of civilians.