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Lapid says attacks on Gaza aid trucks are by government-backed militias

May 22, 2024 at 9:40 am

Humanitarian aid supplies dumped by Jewish settlers to road near Tarqumiyah military checkpoint in Hebron, West Bank on May 13, 2024 [İbrahim Hamad – Anadolu Agency]

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid said on Tuesday that those who attack the humanitarian aid trucks bound for war-torn Gaza are militias backed by the Israeli government, Anadolu has reported. Lapid made his comments on Army Radio. He described the government led by Benjamin Netanyahu as Israel’s “ruling regime”.

Over the past few weeks, illegal Israeli settlers have attacked and vandalised dozens of aid trucks travelling from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip. Last week, illegal settlers burned a Palestinian aid truck east of Ramallah and assaulted its driver.

According to the Times of Israel, the Israeli far-right group known as “Tzav 9” has claimed responsibility for the attack and vowed to continue to block aid deliveries into the besieged Gaza Strip.

Jordan accused Israeli extremists of attacking two aid convoys on 1 May and another convoy of 35 trucks on 7 May delivering essential aid from the kingdom to Gaza via the occupied West Bank.

Israel imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip last October, leaving the territory’s entire population on the verge of starvation. The siege is part of a deadly offensive launched by the apartheid state on the Palestinian enclave following a Hamas attack that is alleged to have killed nearly 1,200 people on 7 October, although many were reported to have been killed by the Israel Defence Forces.

More than 35,600 Palestinians have since been killed by Israel in Gaza, mostly women and children, and 80,000 have been wounded. Almost eight months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lie in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine.

Israel stands accused of “genocide” at the International Court of Justice, which has ordered Tel Aviv to ensure its forces do not commit acts of genocide and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

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