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UK urges probe into Israeli killing of civilians awaiting aid in Gaza

LONDON: UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron on Friday called for an urgent investigation into the Israeli killing of civilians awaiting aid in Gaza.

“The deaths of people in Gaza waiting for an aid convoy yesterday were horrific. There must be an urgent investigation and accountability. This must not happen again,” Cameron said in a statement.

He highlighted a stark decrease in the number of aid convoys, revealing that in February, only half the usual number of trucks crossed into Gaza compared to January.

This is “simply unacceptable,” he said.

“Israel has an obligation to ensure that significantly more humanitarian aid reaches the people of Gaza. We have identified a series of bottlenecks that need addressing: Israel must urgently open more crossings into

Gaza; eliminate bureaucratic obstacles; enable aid operations in Gaza; and ensure there is a robust de-confliction mechanism in place to protect ordinary Palestinians, NGOs, medics, and others providing aid.”

“This tragedy only serves to underscore th
e importance of securing an immediate humanitarian pause. A sustained pause in the fighting is the only way to get lifesaving aid at the scale needed and free the hostages cruelly held by Hamas,” he added.

On Thursday, Israeli forces opened fire on a crowd of Palestinians waiting for humanitarian aid at the Al Nabulsi roundabout on Al Rashid Street, a major coastal road to the west of Gaza City in northern Gaza, leaving at least 112 Palestinians dead and 760 injured.

The Israeli military said an initial investigation found that Palestinians approached a military checkpoint overseeing the entry of the aid trucks when soldiers fired warning shots and shot at the legs of Palestinians who continued to move toward the troops.

Israel has launched a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since an Oct. 7, 2023 attack by the Palestinian group Hamas, which Tel Aviv says killed nearly 1,200 people.

At least 30,035 Palestinians have since been killed and 70,457 others injured amid mass destruction and shortages
of necessities.