July 20, 2024
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Israel denies responsibility for Gaza Hospital blast ahead of Biden visit

The White House says it recognizes that Israel feels “very strongly” that a huge blast at a hospital in Gaza City “was not caused by them”.

“The Israelis have categorically and very stridently denied that they had anything to do with it,” White House spokesman John Kirby said.

Authorities in Gaza, the Palestinian territory run by the militant group Hamas, say 500 people died in an explosion at the hospital. Hamas blamed Israel, which in turn has blamed another group, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Both have denied responsibility.

President Joe Biden is due to arrive In Israel later on Wednesday to express his solidarity and to discuss war plans with its leaders.

But his visit has been hugely complicated by the Gaza hospital blast. A planned visit to Jordan to meet Arab leaders was cancelled by the Jordanians amid outrage over the deaths in Gaza.

Kirby said it was a “mutual decision” to cancel the Jordan trip.

Hundreds of Palestinians are feared dead after a huge blast at a hospital in Gaza City, blamed by the Hamas group on an Israeli air strike.

Israel says the blast was caused by rockets misfired by another group, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and both sides deny blame

At least 600,000 Palestinians have fled the northern Gaza Strip for the south since Israeli military warnings

Israel has blocked essential supplies to Gaza in retaliation for a Hamas attack on 7 October that left 1,300 Israelis dead

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