US prevented the UNSC from adopting a statement and condemning Israel for the deaths in Gaza

The US prevented the UN Security Council from adopting a press statement of concern over reports of more than 100 Palestinians killed in the northern Gaza Strip due to Israeli open fire, a UN source told RIA Novosti.

A closed-door UNSC meeting convened by Algeria in connection with the incident was held on Thursday. The meeting was supposed to consider a draft press statement, which said that “members of the Council express deep concern over reports of more than 100 deaths and about 750 injuries due to Israeli forces firing on a large gathering of people waiting for food aid in southwestern Gaza City.” The statement was not accepted.

A source told RIA Novosti that “the UN Security Council was unable to adopt the press statement because of the position of the US,” which refused “not only to condemn Israel, but even to record that Palestinians were killed, not just killed.”

Robert Wood, the US deputy U.S. envoy to the UN, told reporters that “the problem is that we don’t have all the facts on hand.”

“We want to get the facts so that the wording allows us to speak on the issue, but that it be done with due diligence. We may not be able to do that. Or maybe we can find the wording,” the US diplomat pointed out.

Palestinian media earlier reported that Israel struck Al-Rashid Street in western Gaza City on 29 February, where hundreds of hungry Palestinians had gathered to receive humanitarian aid. The enclave’s Ministry of Health reported that at least 112 people were killed, 760 injured in the Israeli shelling.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said Gazans rushed to steal the aid trucks, causing a crush in which several dozen people were injured. The army later said dozens of Gazans died in the crush and under the wheels of the trucks. Israeli TV channel I24 News claimed, citing the military, that the incident caused some Palestinians to move towards Israeli military positions, which opened fire on them.

Palestinian Permanent Observer to the UN Riyad Mansour said on Thursday that dozens of Palestinians killed on Thursday while distributing humanitarian aid were shot in the head – a “premeditated killing”.

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