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US President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Image: Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

According to an Axios report, one US official said “Biden is p***ed. The temperature regarding Bibi is very high.”

Tensions are reportedly high in the White House ahead of US President Joe Biden’s telephone discussion with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday following the killing of seven World Central Kitchen (WCK) aid workers in an Israeli air strike in Gaza earlier this week.

According to an Axios report, one US official said “Biden is p***ed. The temperature regarding Bibi is very high.”

Biden made a personal call to Chef Jose Andres, the founder of WCK, who is not only well-known in Washington but “also a long-time Biden supporter who the president knows personally,” the report said.

The call “was a personally difficult moment for the president,” another US official reportedly said.

Biden ‘Outraged’

The US President said in a statement on Wednesday that he was “outraged and heartbroken” by the deaths of the aid workers.

He further said “This conflict has been one of the worst in recent memory” in terms of the number of aid workers killed, adding that this is “a major reason” for the distribution of aid in Gaza having “been so difficult.”

“Because Israel has not done enough to protect aid workers trying to deliver desperately needed help to civilians,” Biden said.

In a call with Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, on Wednesday, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin also “expressed his outrage at the Israeli strike” on the aid convoy in a call, reported Axios, citing a readout from the Pentagon.

Austin “stressed the need to immediately take concrete steps to protect aid workers and Palestinian civilians in Gaza after repeated coordination failures with foreign aid groups.”

US, Israeli Officials ‘Concerned’

“Both U.S. and Israeli officials,” Axios said, were “highly concerned” that the attack “will erase recent initial progress made in improving the flow of aid into Gaza and exacerbate the humanitarian crisis.”

Netanyahu said the killings were “a tragic incident of an unintentional targeting of innocent civilians that we regret” and will be investigated.

WCK, which runs more than 60 kitchens in southern and central Gaza announced it would pause its operations with immediate effect, after the killings.

The organization said the team “was traveling in a deconflicted zone in two armored cars branded with the WCK logo and a soft skin vehicle” when the attack occurred.

“Despite coordinating movements with the IDF (Israeli Army – PC), the convoy was hit as it was leaving the Deir al-Balah warehouse (in central Gaza), where the team had unloaded more than 100 tons of humanitarian food aid brought to Gaza on the maritime route,” the statement said.

World Central Kitchen CEO Erin Gore said: “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.”

Israeli Ambassadors Summoned

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

Australia and the UK both summoned the Israeli ambassadors following the attack.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese told reporters “We want full accountability for this because this is a tragedy that should never have occurred.”

Britain’s Minister for Development and Africa, Andrew Mitchell, said in a statement: “I requested a quick and transparent investigation, shared with the international community, and full accountability.”

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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