Biden administration ‘outraged’ after Israeli airstrike kills aid workers

Israeli PM and president lament ‘unintentional’ harm to aid workers killed in a IDF airstrike in Gaza.

By World Israel News Staff

The White House was “outraged” Tuesday, following the killing of seven aid workers in an Israeli airstrike in the Gaza Strip.

The U.S.-based World Central Kitchen organization said that seven of its workers were killed in an apparent Israeli airstrike on a convoy of trucks delivering food in Deir al-Balah in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

National Security Council Communications Adviser John Kirby told reporters the Biden administration was “outraged” by the incident, and demanded “accountability” from Israel.

“We were outraged to learn of an IDF strike that killed a number of civilian humanitarian workers yesterday from the World Central Kitchen, which has been relentlessly working to get food to those who are hungry in Gaza.”

“We hope that those findings will be made public, and that there is appropriate accountability held.”

Kirby also said the strike was “emblematic of the larger problem and evidence of why distribution of aid in Gaza has been so challenging.”

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that President Joe Biden called Jose Andres, founder of the World Central Kitchen, to express his condolences, saying he was “heartbroken” by the aid workers’ deaths.

“The President conveyed he will make clear to Israel that humanitarian aid workers must be protected,” Jean-Pierre said.

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Biden’s Israeli counterpart, President Isaac Herzog, also spoke with Andres Tuesday.

President Herzog expressed his “deep sorrow and sincere apologies over the tragic loss of life of WCK staff in the Gaza Strip last night,” the president’s office said, “and sent his condolences to their families and loved ones.”

“The President reiterated Israel’s commitment to ensuring a thorough investigation of the tragedy, which occurred amidst the ongoing war against the terrorist organization Hamas.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement while leaving Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem Tuesday, after recovering from a hernia operation, lamenting the aid workers’ deaths and vowing to “prevent a recurrence.”

“Unfortunately, in the past day there was a tragic event in which our forces unintentionally harmed non-combatants in the Gaza Strip. This happens in war. We are conducting a thorough inquiry and are in contact with the governments. We will do everything to prevent a recurrence.”

The Israel Defense Forces announced that it is investigating the incident.

“The IDF is conducting a thorough review at the highest levels to understand the circumstances of this tragic incident,” the IDF said. “The IDF makes extensive efforts to enable the safe delivery of humanitarian aid, and has been working closely with WCK in their vital efforts to provide food and humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza.”

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According to WCK, the workers were from Australia, Poland, the United Kingdom, one dual US-Canadian citizen, and one Gazan.