President Biden stated on Monday that the foremost floor offensive that Israel is predicted to hold out within the southern Gaza metropolis of Rafah mustn’t proceed with out a “credible plan” to make sure the security of greater than 1 million individuals sheltering there.
Mr. Biden spoke after assembly on Monday afternoon with King Abdullah II of Jordan, a key determine within the push for a cease-fire within the Gaza Strip, within the first face-to-face dialog between the 2 leaders for the reason that Israel-Hamas struggle began.
The president stated he and the Jordanian monarch mentioned the cease-fire talks, with Mr. Biden suggesting a six-week pause within the combating that would permit for the discharge of hostages held by Hamas and the forging of one thing “extra enduring.”
Mr. Biden stated he was significantly involved concerning the state of affairs in Rafah, the place Israeli forces carried out a uncommon rescue mission early on Monday to free two males held hostage for greater than 4 months, and displaced Gazans worry an invasion that may go away them nowhere to flee.
“Many individuals there have been displaced, displaced a number of instances fleeing the violence to the north,” Mr. Biden stated. “And now they’re packed into Rafah, uncovered and weak. They have to be protected.”
The go to got here because the king sought to shore up worldwide assist for an instantaneous cease-fire in Gaza — which Mr. Biden has repeatedly rejected — and because the U.S. continued to use stress on Israel to mitigate casualties and civilian displacements.
King Abdullah stated an Israeli invasion of Rafah was “sure to provide one other humanitarian disaster.”
“The state of affairs is already insufferable for over one million individuals who had been pushed into Rafah for the reason that struggle began,” he stated. “We can not stand by and let this proceed. We’d like a long-lasting cease-fire now. This struggle should finish.”
Forward of the assembly, John F. Kirby, a White Home spokesman, stated that the U.S. continued to reject the concept of a basic cease-fire that will completely halt the combating, however that President Biden additionally nonetheless supported a humanitarian pause.
“We need to see the struggle finish as quickly as doable,” he stated. “And we imagine one of many first steps that’s essential to doing that could be a humanitarian pause, an prolonged pause longer than what we noticed again in November of every week, that will permit us to get all of the hostages out, get extra assist and help in, after which hopefully result in discussions that may get us nearer to an finish to the battle.”
Egypt and Qatar, performing as intermediaries between Israel and Hamas, have led talks aimed toward halting the combating and releasing hostages held in Gaza. The Biden administration has been actively concerned in these negotiations, working publicly and behind the scenes to attempt to advance a cease-fire deal.
The C.I.A. director, William J. Burns, was anticipated to journey to Cairo for continued talks on Tuesday on the hostages, in keeping with a U.S. official who spoke on situation of anonymity concerning the talks. Mr. Burns’s deliberate journey was disclosed by a U.S. official, who spoke on situation of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the discussions.
Whereas Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel final week publicly dismissed a Hamas proposal, Israeli officers have signaled that their authorities remains to be open to negotiation. The mere undeniable fact that extra talks might be happening in Cairo this week is seen as a optimistic signal.
Forward of the assembly between Mr. Biden and King Abdullah, the White Home stated they might discuss “efforts to provide an everlasting finish to the disaster” in Gaza, the place well being officers say greater than 28,000 individuals have been killed for the reason that begin of the struggle.
A lot of Jordan’s inhabitants is ethnically Palestinian, placing the nation — a detailed U.S. ally that has a peace treaty with Israel — in a difficult place because it navigates the fallout from the struggle.
King Abdullah has repeatedly referred to as for an immediate cease-fire and for the delivery of more humanitarian aid into Gaza. He led a summit meeting in Jordan final month concerning the state of affairs within the enclave and has been working in live performance with different Arab leaders to push for a halt to the combating.
Jordan and Israel share a border, along with sustaining a vital regional alliance. The dominion is the custodian of the Aqsa compound in Jerusalem, a key holy website in Islam that can be revered by Jews, who name it the Temple Mount. The compound has usually been a source of disputes between Israelis and Palestinians.
However relations between Jordan and Israel grew tenser lately. And since Israel launched a retaliatory struggle in opposition to Hamas in Gaza in response to the lethal Oct. 7 assaults, King Abdullah has repeatedly criticized how Israel has carried out its assault.