1709265817 Washington demands answers ​​from Israel Emmanuel Macron expresses his deep

Washington demands “answers” ​​from Israel, Emmanuel Macron expresses his “deep indignation”.

Palestinians carry the body of a person who died during a food distribution in Gaza, February 29, 2024. Palestinians carry the body of a person who died during a food distribution in Gaza, February 29, 2024. AFP

Dozens, maybe a hundred dead. There was a bloody scene in Gaza on Thursday, February 29, during the distribution of food aid, sparking outrage and calls for truth-clarification within the international community.

The health ministry in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip described the situation as a “massacre” and reported at least 112 dead and 760 injured. Earlier, Al-Shifa Hospital Emergency Director Amjad Aliwa announced that 50 people were killed and more than 120 injured, “including women and children, after occupation forces shot and killed thousands of citizens” riding on “aid trucks.” rushed to. .

An Israeli army official acknowledged “limited shooting” by Israeli soldiers who felt “threatened,” but reported “a stampede in which dozens of residents were killed and injured, some knocked down by the aid trucks.”

In the evening, Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari reiterated that Israeli soldiers had carried out “neither tank fire nor air strikes on the convoy.” According to him, “the Israeli army secured a humanitarian corridor” to send aid to the residents of the northern Gaza Strip, and “ [leurs] “Drones were in the air only to provide a clear picture from above.” Mr. Hagari described “pokes and kicks” that allegedly caused the deaths of “dozens of Gaza residents” and said the Israeli army “tried “to disperse the crowd with a few warning shots”.


Witnesses told Agence France-Presse (AFP) of scenes in which thousands of people rushed towards aid trucks arriving at the “Nablus roundabout” in the west of Gaza City. “We were on Al-Rachid Street and suddenly we were attacked by tanks. There were packages full of relief supplies. Due to the lack of food and flour, people rushed to collect them. “There was chaos, there were crowds, but the occupiers kept shooting at us, there were so many martyrs and victims,” said a witness who did not want to reveal his identity.

Another witness, Kamel Abu Nahel, told the Associated Press that Israeli troops opened fire on the crowd as people were taking boxes of flour and canned goods from trucks, causing them to scatter and some to hide under cars. After the shooting, people returned to the trucks and soldiers opened fire again, he said. Kamel Abu Nahel described being shot in the leg and falling, after which his leg was crushed by a speeding truck, he said. Alaa Abu Daiya, another witness, said Israeli troops opened fire and a tank fired a grenade.

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According to Fares Afana, head of emergency services at Kamal Edwan Hospital, doctors who arrived on the scene found “dozens or hundreds” of people lying on the ground. According to him, there were not enough ambulances to collect all the dead and injured, some were transported to hospitals in donkey-drawn carts.

Josep Borrell denounces “new slaughter”.

When asked on Thursday about these dozens of deaths in Gaza, American President Joe Biden replied: “We are currently looking into it.” There are two contradictory versions of what happened. I do not have an answer yet. » “We have been in contact with the Israeli government since this morning and understand that an investigation is underway,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller told reporters. We will closely monitor this investigation and push for answers. »

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Mr. Biden, who said this week that he hoped for a ceasefire in Gaza by Monday, also returned to his assertion, saying that this pause in hostilities was “unlikely to occur” by that date.

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Emmanuel Macron announced this on the night from Thursday to Friday on X, of his “deep indignation at the images reaching us from Gaza, where civilians were attacked by Israeli soldiers.” The head of state “expresses [s]condemns these shootings in the strongest terms and calls for truth, justice and respect for international law. » Previously, the State Department stated that “Israeli soldiers' shooting of civilians trying to access food cannot be justified.”

The head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, denounced “new bloodbath” and “totally unacceptable” deaths. “Depriving people of humanitarian assistance constitutes a serious violation” of international humanitarian law, Mr. Borrell stressed, calling for “unhindered humanitarian access to the Gaza Strip.”

“Life is leaving Gaza at a frightening rate”

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the incidents. “We don’t know exactly what happened. But whether these people were killed by Israeli fire, whether they were crushed by crowds or run over by trucks, these are acts of violence that are in some way linked to this conflict,” said Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman for Mr. Guterres. Description of deaths in “horrific circumstances.”

The UN Security Council met urgently behind closed doors on Thursday evening. “This monstrous massacre is proof that Palestinians will pay with their lives as long as the Security Council is paralyzed and vetoes are imposed,” Palestinian Ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour told the press. “The Security Council should say “enough,” he stressed. If they have the courage and determination to prevent these massacres from happening again, we need a ceasefire. » Even as the American president agitates behind the scenes for a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, on February 20 the United States blocked for the third time a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

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This time, Algeria proposed a draft statement expressing the “deep concern” of its 15 members and pointing to the responsibility of the “Israeli Armed Forces” in a text obtained by the AFP news agency [qui] open fire.” A formulation that the United States opposed, according to a diplomatic source, without completely closing the door to the adoption of a resolution.

“The parties are working on the language to see if we can provide an explanation,” said US Deputy Ambassador Robert Wood. “The problem is that we don't have all the facts,” he added, assuring that he wanted to find a wording that would guarantee that “the necessary checks on guilt have been carried out.”

“Life is leaving Gaza at a frightening rate,” the UN humanitarian chief said earlier. “I am outraged by reports that hundreds of people were killed and injured during a humanitarian aid shipment west of Gaza City today [jeudi] ” wrote Martin Griffiths on social network.

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2.2 million people threatened by famine

The United Nations (UN) estimates that 2.2 million people, the vast majority of Gaza's population, are at risk of famine, particularly in the north, where destruction, fighting and looting make the delivery of humanitarian aid almost impossible.

According to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), just over 2,300 aid trucks entered the Gaza Strip in February, a decrease of around 50% compared to January, and a daily average of around 82 trucks per day. According to the United Nations, before the war began on October 7, when the needs of the local population were lower, an average of around 500 trucks entered the Gaza Strip every day.

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Palestinians in Gaza have told AFP in recent days that they are forced to eat leaves or fodder or even slaughter draft animals for food. The head of the UN Humanitarian Coordination Office for the Palestinian Territories, Andrea De Dominico, recently told AFP that on several occasions when food convoys from Gaza arrived in the north, “thousands of people had blocked trucks from unloading them on the Danger “shot”.

The world with AFP

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