Watch Three Reporters Take Turns Grilling Biden Official Over Video Of Palestinian Being Killed

[Screenshot/State Department briefing]

Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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Three reporters took turns grilling State Department spokesperson Vedant Patel at Wednesday’s briefing over the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) allegedly killing an unarmed Palestinian.

Footage appeared to capture IDF soldiers killing an unarmed Palestinian man holding a white flag while putting his hands up, according to the Independent. Authorities identified the man as 51-year-old Ramzi Abu Sahloul, who worked as a children’s clothes seller.

The first reporter, Robert Moore of ITV News, asked if the State Department intends to support an investigation into the footage. Patel said he has not seen the video of the shooting and is not aware of the “full circumstances.”

“Any civilian death is heartbreaking, and any civilian life lost is one too many, and we have made that clear with the Israelis and will continue to do so,” Patel said.

“About that comment about it being heartbreaking, which is a platitude we often hear, would you urge given that you broadly support IDF operations in the Gaza Strip, would you support an Israeli investigation of what happened in that video?” Moore asked. “Given that they’re waving a white flag and presented no threat?”

“That is for the IDF to undertake and to determine based on the circumstances of that situation. What I will say is that we have been clear to our Israeli partners that they need to take every possible measure to avoid civilian harm during an operation and investigate credible allegations of law or war violations when they arrive. But that is for our Israeli partners and the IDF to speak to,” Patel continued.

Another reporter, Humeyra Pamuk of Reuters, pressed him on whether the State Department has communicated with Israel and obtained specific facts on the matter. Patel said he has “no specifics” about any “diplomatic conversations.” (RELATED: ‘That’s Not An Argument!’: Reporter Clashes With State Dept. Spokesman About Iran Using Unfrozen Funds To Back Hamas) 

Associated Press reporter Matt Lee questioned whether there has been any explanation from the Israelis on several pieces of footage showing atrocities in Gaza. Patel said the U.S. government will continue to raise concerns about the violence from the IDF in the region.

“Have you ever gotten an answer from the Israelis on these questions?” Lee asked.

“I’m not going to speak to the privacy of certain diplomatic conversations, Matt, but we have been clear that there is a moral and strategic comparative to take as many steps as possible to minimize civilian casualties,” Patel answered.

“That’s fine, that’s fine that you say that, but then when you are asked specific questions like this relating to specific footage, and this is not the first time that this has happened. You’ve been asked repeatedly about this and you come back and say, ‘well we’ve raised questions. We’ve asked the Israelis questions.’ Have you ever gotten a response to any of this?”

“These conversations—” Patel began.

“I’m not asking for you for the details, I just want to know—” Lee said.

“We have,” Patel interjected. “These conversations are private, we’ve raised with the Israelis specific circumstances and we have—”

“You have gotten answers?” the AP reporter interjected.

“Correct, I’m not gonna speak to those conversations right now,” the spokesperson replied.

Pamuk then chimed in to ask if the State Department plans to communicate with Israel about this specific instance. Patel reiterated he will not get into specifics, but that the administration is raising concerns with Israel about civilian losses.