Home World Israel-Hamas War: Over 100 Killed Amid Gunfire, Panic At Gaza Food Lines, Death Toll Passes 30,000

Israel-Hamas War: Over 100 Killed Amid Gunfire, Panic At Gaza Food Lines, Death Toll Passes 30,000

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Israel-Hamas War: Over 100 Killed Amid Gunfire, Panic At Gaza Food Lines, Death Toll Passes 30,000

Gaza health authorities said Israeli forces on Thursday shot dead more than 100 Palestinians as they waited for aid delivery, but Israel blamed the deaths on crowds that surrounded aid trucks, saying victims had been trampled or run over, news agency Reuters reported citing officials.  As per the Reuters report, at least 112 people were killed and more than 280 wounded in the incident near Gaza City.

Reuters report citing medics in Gaza said they could not cope with the flood of serious injuries, which came as the death toll in nearly five months of war passed 30,000, according to Palestinian health authorities.

Israel disputed the account provided by officials in Hamas-run Gaza, which has been bombarded by Israeli forces for months since the Palestinian militant group’s deadly rampage in southern Israel on October 7.

Incident To Affect Qatar Talks: 

According to the report, Hamas has said that the incident could jeopardise talks in Qatar aimed at securing a ceasefire and the release of Israeli hostages it is holding. When asked if he thought it would complicate the talks, US President Joe Biden said: “I know it will”. 

Here’s What Exactly Happened: 

According to the Reuters report, the Israeli military stated that the trucks were operated by private contractors as part of an aid operation that it had been overseeing for the past four nights.

The report citing an Israeli official said there had been two incidents, hundreds of metres apart. In the first, dozens were killed or injured as they tried to take aid from the trucks and were trampled or run over.

He said there was a second, subsequent incident as the trucks moved off. Some people in the crowd approached troops who felt under threat and opened fire, killing an unknown number in a “limited response”, he said. He dismissed the casualty toll given by Gaza authorities but gave no figure himself.

In a later briefing, Israel Defense Forces spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari also said dozens had been trampled to death or injured in a fight to take supplies off the trucks.

He said tanks escorting the trucks had subsequently fired warning shots to disperse the crowd and backed away when events began to get out of hand. “No IDF strike was conducted towards the aid convoy,” he said.

“The IDF was there conducting a humanitarian operation to secure the humanitarian corridor and allow the aid convoy to reach its designated distribution point”. 

The US State Department said it was urgently seeking information on the incident as did the French foreign ministry.

Hamas Rejects Israeli Accounts: 

According to Reuters, the Hamas issued a statement rejecting the Israeli account.

It said the Health Ministry had presented “undeniable” evidence of “direct firing at citizens, including headshots aimed at immediate killing, in addition to the testimonies of all witnesses who confirmed being targeted with direct fire without posing any threat to the occupying army”.

The White House said Biden discussed the recent firing incident with the leaders of Egypt and Qatar, as well as ways to secure the release of Israeli hostages and a six-week ceasefire.

Reuters report said that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas labelled the firing an “ugly massacre” by Israel.

French foreign ministry spokesperson Christophe Lemoine stated that Israel was responsible under international law for protecting aid distribution to civilians, Reuters reported. 

According to Palestinian health authorities, 30,035 Palestinians have been confirmed killed and more than 70,000 wounded in Israel’s offensive, which began following the October 7 attack in which Israel claimed Hamas gunmen killed 1,200 people and kidnapped 253.

Much of Gaza has been reduced to rubble, and the majority of its 2.3 million residents have been displaced at least once.

Aid deliveries to northern Gaza have been sparse and chaotic, passing through more active military zones to an area where the UN claims many people are starving, with footage showing desperate crowds forming around supply trucks.

UN and other relief agencies have complained that Israel has obstructed or limited their attempts to deliver aid. Israel denies imposing any restrictions on humanitarian aid.

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