Biden says he has ‘no confidence’ in Palestinian death count
US President Joe Biden (Reuters)
The health ministry estimates that over 6,500 people have died as a result of Israeli attacks in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip. U.S. President Joe Biden stated on Wednesday that he has “no confidence in the number that the Palestinians are using” for this figure.
During a press conference at the White House, Biden was questioned about whether Israel was disregarding American pleas to lessen civilian casualties during its bombardment of the coastal enclave, given that the ministry reports that the death toll includes almost 2,700 children.
“What they say to me is I have no notion that the Palestinians are telling the truth about how many people are killed. I’m sure innocents have been killed, and it’s the price of waging a war,” Biden said.
“(The) Israelis should be incredibly careful to be sure that they’re focusing on going after the folks that (are) propagating this war against Israel. And it’s against their interest when that doesn’t happen,” Biden added.
“But I have no confidence in the number that the Palestinians are using.”
Biden did not say why he was skeptical of the Palestinian figures.
Reuters has been unable to independently verify casualty figures in the fighting, which began with an Oct. 7 Hamas gun rampage in southern Israel that Israeli authorities say killed 1,400 people.
Palestinians reject the notion that the Gaza death count is inaccurate.