Italy urges Israel to determine facts, perpetrators behind deadly attack on malnourished civilians in Gaza

Italy urges Israel to determine facts, perpetrators behind deadly attack on malnourished civilians in Gaza

Situation ‘requires us to immediately intensify efforts’ for cease-fire, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni says

ADDS REMARKS FROM ITALIAN FOREIGN MINISTER

By Ahmet Gencturk

ATHENS (AA) - Italy on Thursday urged Israel to determine the facts and perpetrators behind the killing of malnourished Palestinians waiting for a delivery of aid in the besieged Gaza Strip.

“I learned with deep dismay and concern the dramatic news of what happened today in Gaza,” Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said on X.

At least 112 Palestinians were killed and 760 others injured when Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinians waiting for humanitarian aid south of Gaza City on Thursday, the Health Ministry in the enclave said.

Meloni said: “It is urgent for Israel to ascertain the dynamics of the facts and the related responsibilities.”

She emphasized that the growing civilian death toll and humanitarian crisis in Gaza “require us to immediately intensify efforts on the ongoing negotiations to create the conditions for a cease-fire and the release of the hostages.”

Meanwhile, Italian Foreign Minister Antonia Tajani said on X: "The tragic deaths at #Gaza call for an immediate ceasefire to facilitate more humanitarian aid, the release of hostages and the protection of civilians."

"We strongly ask #Israel to protect the population in Gaza and to rigorously ascertain facts and responsibilities," he added.

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

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

Israel has also imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip, leaving its population, particularly residents of northern Gaza, on the verge of starvation.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water, and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

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