US vetoes UN Security Council motion holding Israel responsible for Gaza aid convoy deaths

The US Deputy Ambassador said, ‘We don’t have all the facts here.’

By Vered Weiss, World Israel News

A motion put forward by Arab nations to blame Israel for the deadly humanitarian aid convoy incident in northern Gaza on Thursday was blocked by the US.

The Hamas Health Ministry claimed that 104 Palestinians died after the IDF opened fire on a crowd rushing to seize humanitarian aid.

However, the IDF insists that the majority of the deaths were caused by crowds trampling each other.

A declaration at the UN Security Council drafted by Algeria and supported by other Arab countries expressed  “deep concern” and said the 104 deaths were “due to the opening fire by Israeli forces.”

However, US Deputy Ambassador Robert Wood vetoed the motion and said, “The problem is that we don’t have all the facts here.”

Wood added that the declaration should be worded using “the necessary due diligence with regards to culpability.”

France and Germany agreed that there should be an independent inquiry before rushing to blame Israel for the deaths.

Foreign Minister Stephane Sejourne said Friday. “We will ask for explanations, and there will have to be an independent probe to determine what happened.”

The German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said the UN Security Council “must fully investigate how the mass panic and shooting could have happened.”

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Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan were among the Arab nations that alleged Israel had targeted civilians and also called for an increase in safe passages for humanitarian aid as well as pressure on Israel for an immediate ceasefire.

The UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, who was attending a local conference at St. Vincent and the Grenadines was “shocked” at the incident and implying criticism of the United States, said geopolitical divisions “transformed the veto power into an effective instrument of paralysis of the action of the Security Council.”

Guterres added, “I am totally convinced that we need a humanitarian ceasefire and we need the unconditional and immediate release of hostages and that we should have a Security Council able to achieve these objectives.”

IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari said the IDF were engaged in allowing humanitarian aid from Israel to reach Gazans.

When the disorder began, they fired into the air and at a few Gazans who were rushing towards the soldiers.

The IDF said that at most, these actions resulted in 10 deaths and not the 104 reported by Hamas.

Hagari said, “As these vital humanitarian supplies made their way toward Gazans in need, thousands of Gazans [rushed] the trucks, some began violently pushing and trampling other Gazans to death, looting the humanitarian supplies.”

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He continued, “No IDF strike was conducted toward the aid convoy. On the contrary, the IDF was there carrying out a humanitarian aid operation, to secure the humanitarian corridor, and allow the aid convoy to reach its distribution point, so that the humanitarian aid could reach Gazan civilians in the north who are in need.”