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The head of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said sorry for the airstrike that mistakenly killed seven aid workers, calling it a serious error

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Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of General Staff Herzi Halevi apologized on Tuesday for the IDF airstrike in Gaza that killed seven aid workers.

Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of General Staff Herzi Halevi apologized on Tuesday for the IDF airstrike in Gaza that killed seven aid workers.

Seven aid workers, including citizens from the U.K., Australia, and Poland, were killed by an IDF airstrike on Monday while delivering aid to Gaza as part of José Andrés’ World Central Kitchen charity.

In a video In a statement released by the IDF on Tuesday evening, Halevi apologized for the killings and blamed the airstrike on a case of “misidentification.”

“Last night, seven employees of the World Central Kitchen were killed,” said Halevi:

WCK is an organization whose people work across the globe, including in Israel, to do good in difficult conditions. The IDF works together closely with the World Central Kitchen and greatly appreciates the important work that they do. The IDF completed a preliminary debrief. I want to be very clear. The strike was not carried out with the intention of harming WCK aid workers. It was a mistake that followed a misidentification at night, during a war, in very complex conditions. It shouldn’t have happened.

Halevi said Israel would take “immediate action to ensure that more is done to protect humanitarian aid workers,” and declared:

This incident was a grave mistake. Israel is at war with Hamas, not with the people of Gaza. We are sorry for the unintentional harm to the members of WCK. We share in the grief of their families, as well as the entire World Central Kitchen organization, from the bottom of our hearts. An independent body will investigate the incident thoroughly. We will complete it in the next coming days. We will learn from the conclusions and implement them immediately. We will share, in full transparency, the findings of the investigation with the World Central Kitchen and other international relevant organizations.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also issued a statement on Tuesday taking responsibility for the killings and expressing deep regrets.

“Israel deeply regrets the tragic incident which claimed the lives of seven humanitarian aid workers,” he wrote. “Our hearts go out to their families and to their home countries. The IDF is conducting a swift and transparent investigation and we will make our findings public.”

Netanyahu vowed, “Israel is fully committed to enabling humanitarian aid to reach the civilian population in Gaza and we will do everything in our power to ensure that such tragedies do not occur in the future.”

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