Sunday, December 3, 2023

Biden tells Netanyahu Gaza hospital attack done by Palestinians

US President Joe Biden has backed the Israeli claim that Palestinians were responsible for the attack on al-Ahli al-Arab hospital in Gaza. The Palestinian Islamic Jihad has rejected as baseless the claim.

During a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv, Biden told the Israeli leader the deadly bombing of a Gaza hospital “appears as though it was done by the other team, not you”.

“The point is, is that I was deeply saddened and outraged by the explosion of the hospital in Gaza yesterday, and based on what I’ve seen, it appears as though it was done by the other team, not you,” Biden told Netanyahu after his arrival in Israel on Wednesday.

“But there’s a lot of people out there not sure, so we’ve got a lot—we’ve got to overcome a lot of things.”

The claim appears to accept the Israeli military version of events, which said that Islamic Jihad was responsible for the strike.

The Israeli army has in the past claimed that Palestinians were responsible for atrocities carried out by its forces, including the Israeli killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh last year.

Biden has previously falsely stated that he had seen images of “terrorists beheading children”.

Biden’s arrival in wartime Tel Aviv marks his most forceful public show of support for Israel since the October 7 attacks by Hamas that left 1,400 Israelis – and dozens of Americans – dead. Other Americans, along with many Israelis, are also being held hostage by Hamas. At least 3,300 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip since the fighting began, the Palestinian health ministry in Gaza announced Wednesday.

Biden’s visit came less than a day after a horrifying blast at Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital in Gaza City. Palestinian officials have said hundreds are dead following the explosion at the center of the city and blamed Israel.

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