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7 aid workers killed in Israeli strike in Gaza: World Central Kitchen

World Central Kitchen says 7 killed are from Australia, Poland, UK, a dual citizen of US and Canada, and Palestine

11:45 - 2/04/2024 Tuesday
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File photo
File photo

The World Central Kitchen (WCK) on Tuesday confirmed that its seven humanitarian aid workers were killed in Monday's Israeli strike in the Gaza Strip.

"The WCK team was traveling in a deconflicted zone in two armored cars branded with the WCK logo and a soft skin vehicle," the WCK said in a statement.

Despite coordinating movements with the Israeli army, it added that the convoy was hit as it was leaving the Deir al-Balah warehouse, where the team had unloaded more than 100 tons of humanitarian food aid brought to Gaza on the maritime route.

"This is not only an attack against WCK, this is an attack on humanitarian organizations showing up in the most dire of situations where food is being used as a weapon of war. This is unforgivable," said World Central Kitchen CEO Erin Gore.

The seven killed are from Australia, Poland, United Kingdom, a dual citizen of the US and Canada, and Palestine.

"I am heartbroken and appalled that we—World Central Kitchen and the world—lost beautiful lives today because of a targeted attack by the IDF. The love they had for feeding people, the determination they embodied to show that humanity rises above all, and the impact they made in countless lives will forever be remembered and cherished," Gore said in the statement.


- WCK pausing operations 'immediately' in region

The WCK announced that it is pausing operations "immediately" in the region. "We will be making decisions about the future of our work soon."

The Israeli military, meanwhile, said it was conducting a thorough review at the highest levels to understand the circumstances of the "tragic" incident.

The US expressed sorrow on Monday over the killing of aid workers of the US-based aid organization.

"We are heartbroken and deeply troubled by the strike that killed @WCKitchen aid workers in Gaza," White House National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said on X, urging Israel to "swiftly" investigate what happened.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since Oct. 7, 2023 cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas which killed some 1,200 people.

Over 32,800 Palestinians have since been killed and 75,300 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, which on Thursday asked it to do more to prevent famine in Gaza.

#Gaza
#humanitarian aid workers
#Israel
#World Central Kitchen
18 days ago