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US senators urge Biden to stop arming Israel

March 12, 2024 at 6:15 pm

United States Capitol building is seen in Washington D.C., United States. [Celal Güneş – Anadolu Agency]

Eight senators sent a letter to US President, Joe Biden, urging him to stop supplying weapons to Israel that “interferes with US humanitarian assistance”, Anadolu Agency reports.

Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders and seven Democrats said, Monday, in the letter that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu government’s interference with humanitarian operations has prevented US aid from reaching its intended recipients in a safe and timely manner.

The senators stressed that Netanyahu government’s interference in US humanitarian operations violates the Humanitarian Aid Corridor Act.

“No assistance shall be furnished under this chapter or the Arms Export Control Act to any country when it is made known to the President that the government of such country prohibits or otherwise restricts, directly or indirectly, the transport or delivery of United States humanitarian assistance.

“Giving this reality, we urge you to make it clear to the Netanyahu government that failure to immediately and dramatically expand humanitarian access and facilitate safe aid deliveries throughout Gaza will lead to serious consequences, as specified under existing US law,” they wrote.

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The senators noted that the severe humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in the Gaza Strip is “nearly unprecedented” in modern history.

Israel has waged a retaliatory offensive against Gaza since a cross-border attack by Hamas on 7 October. The offensive has killed nearly 31,200 Palestinians and injured more than 72,900 amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

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

The Israeli war has pushed 85 per cent of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of most food, clean water and medicine, while 60 per cent of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel is 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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