“Hamas’ Death Toll Report Wasn’t Accurate,” Antonio Tajari Says
Italian Minister for Foreign Affairs Antonio Tajari has said the airstrike that hit a Gaza-based hospital a few days ago was not launched by the Israeli military. Moreover, he has revealed that about 50 people perished in the incident and not the over 450 deaths reported by Hamas.
Tajari, however, has not cited his sources. Since the Al Ahli hospital came under attack last week, all fingers have been pointed at Israel. But the Jewish military has denied responsibility, claiming that the blast was a result of a misfired rocket by the Hamas terrorists. Israel’s claims have been supported by the United States, Canada, and France.
While there were reports that the rocket hit patients in the hospital, Tajani has dismissed them, saying it landed in the hospital’s car park.
Italy Plans to Evacuate Its Citizens From Gaza
Early last week, the Italian Foreign Minister said Italy was planning to evacuate 18 of its citizens from Gaza. He disclosed that government officials were already in Cairo, ready to pick them up at the Rafah crossing when the border opens.
However, reports from Gaza indicate that Hamas has been blocking foreigners from leaving the region despite the Rafah crossing being opened over the weekend. At the moment, only aid trucks are moving in and out of Gaza via Egypt’s border.
United States President Joe Biden is another leader not convinced by the death toll in Al Ahli airstrike. Last week, he said that although he was saddened by the blast, he felt that Hamas exaggerated the number of casualties. Biden then directed his security team to gather information to determine what happened.
Israel Accepts US Request to Suspend Ground Offensive Plans Temporarily
Meanwhile, the Israeli government announced earlier today that it had agreed to the US request to put on hold its Gaza invasion plans to allow Biden’s administration to deploy sufficient air defense systems in an effort to protect American soldiers in the Middle East.
These soldiers have already been targeted severally since the United States expressed support to Israel in the ongoing war. Ten of them sustained minor injuries in Iraq, while 24 were injured in Syria after an Iranian-backed terror group launched a drone attack on them.