US Diplomat Accuses Hamas of Deliberately Targeting Civilians in Gaza Conflict

Hamas has contributed to a high civilian casualty count, U.S. special envoy David Satterfield said, urging Israel to avoid harm to innocent people in Gaza.  “This is a difficult campaign,” Satterfield said as he mentioned the IDF’s military campaign in Gaza to oust Hamas from the enclave. “Hamas has structured it to be a campaign that produces civilian causalities,” he explained. “I have to say, for 15, for 16 years, Hamas has deliberately embedded itself in, around, and under many of those humanitarian sites. It increases the complexity of any campaign of this kind enormously,” explained Satterfield. Israel must conduct the military campaign in a manner which minimizes civilian casualties to the maximum extent possible, which allows clearly recognized de-conflicted humanitarian sites to be spared from attack. White flags are raised by Palestinian civilians evacuation from the northern Gaza Strip on November 7, 2023 He spoke as the international community has increasingly focused on the high death toll from the IDF’s military campaign in Gaza. The IDF has sought to oust Hamas from Gaza in the aftermath of the terror group’s attack on southern Israel in which it killed over 1,400 people and seized over 239 hostages. At a Freshen government-sponsored humanitarian conference in Paris, Prime Minister of Slovenia Robert Golob said “today our hearts cry for the children of Palestine. What we are witnessing is not just a humanitarian crisis, it is the crisis of humanity…the bombing and shelling that we can see are in no proportion with the right of self-defense and its a violation of international humanitarian law.” The damage from the IDF bombings has been compounded by an Israeli decision to close its two crossings into Gaza pending the release of the hostages. It has, however, agreed to allow limited humanitarian assistance to enter Gaza through the Egyptian border crossing at Rafah. US President Joe Biden posted on X that “for weeks I’ve been speaking with Israel’s leaders about the importance of humanitarian pauses in the fighting to get civilians to safety, support the freeing of hostages, and increase the flow of food, water, and medicine into Gaza.” “As of today, there will be two humanitarian passages that will allow people to flee hostile areas in Gaza. And they’ve already enabled thousands to reach safety,” Biden stated. He clarified that Israel is “fighting an enemy embedded in the civilian population, which places innocent Palestinian people at risk. They have an obligation to distinguish between terrorists and civilians and fully comply with international law,” Biden said as he touted the importance of the humanitarian pauses. They “help get civilians to safer areas away from active fighting. They are a step in the right direction,” Biden said as he promised to help protect Palestinian civilians in Gaza. “You have my word: I will continue to advocate for civilian safety and focus on increasing aid to alleviate the suffering of the people of Gaza,” Biden stated.