Family of Australian aid worker killed in Israeli airstrike back war crimes investigation

Family of Australian aid worker killed in Israeli airstrike back war crimes investigation

The family of an Australian aid worker killed in Gaza has backed a war crimes investigation as condemnation of Israel’s military in the conflict continues.

Melbourne-born Lalzawmi “Zomi” Frankcom, along with six other international aid workers, was killed in Central Gaza while working with the World Central Kitchen (WCK) charity.

A preliminary investigation by the Israeli Defence Forces said the deadly airstrike on a convoy of workers charity was due to a “misidentification”.

READ MORE: Australian aid worker’s body transported out of Gaza along with five others killed in Israeli strikes

The family of Frankcom told The Sydney Morning Herald they backed an investigation into whether the Israeli troops responsible for her death should be charged with war crimes.

“It should never have happened,” Frankcom’s brother, Mal, and other family members said of the Israeli drone strike that killed her.

The other aid workers killed included three British citizens, a Polish citizen, and a Canadian-American dual citizen.

There bodies were transported out of the Gaza Strip and into Egypt on Wednesday ahead of their repatriation, Egypt’s state-run Qahera TV reported.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has spoken to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about their deaths.

READ MORE: ‘Anger and concern’: PM urges Israeli leader to investigate aid workers’ deaths

“I expressed Australia’s anger and concern at the death of Zomi Frankcom,” Albanese said yesterday.

“This is someone who was volunteering overseas to provide aid through this charity. This is completely unacceptable.”

He said there was a “strong need” for a transparent investigation into what led to the airstrike.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is coming under pressure to stop selling military supplies to Israel in the wake of the aid workers’ deaths.

“Israel has both the intention and the ability to comply with international humanitarian law. I’ve made that very clear to Prime Minister Netanyahu whenever I’ve spoken to him.

“There have been too many civilian deaths in Gaza.”

In a statement, US President Joe Biden said he’s outraged and heartbroken by the deaths of aid workers, and Israel has not done enough to protect them.

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