Colombia suspends all arms purchases from Israel: President

President Gustavo Petro accuses Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu of 'genocide' in Gaza after strike kills at least 112 Palestinians awaiting aid

Laura Gamba Fadul  | 29.02.2024 - Update : 29.02.2024
Colombia suspends all arms purchases from Israel: President

BOGOTA, Colombia 

Colombia will suspend "all arms purchases from Israel," the country's President Gustavo Petro announced on Thursday.

"The world must block Netanyahu. Colombia suspends all purchases of weapons from Israel," Petro said on X.

The decision came after Israeli forces shelled a crowd of Palestinians awaiting humanitarian aid south of Gaza City, leaving at least 112 dead and 760 injured, according to the Health Ministry in the besieged enclave.

"More than 100 Palestinians who were begging for food, were murdered by Netanyahu. This is called genocide and reminds us of the Holocaust even if the world powers do not like to recognize it," Petro said.

The Israeli military said an initial investigation found that the Palestinians had approached a military checkpoint overseeing the entry of the aid trucks and that soldiers had fired warning shots at their legs as they continued to advance towards the troops.

Israel has launched a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since an Oct. 7 cross-border attack led by Hamas in which some 1,200 people were killed.

At least 30,035 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza, and 70,457 others injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

Israel has also imposed a crippling blockade on the coastal enclave, leaving its population, particularly residents in the north where the shootings on Thursday took place, on the verge of starvation.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel is accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.​​​​​​​

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