Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that strikes against Hamas and other terrorist organizations will continue Monday, after more than a week of exchanging rocket fire and airstrikes in Gaza.
President Joe Biden called Netanyahu last week to assure him that Israel has his “unwavering support” for its right to defend itself. While Biden has urged a peaceful two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict, he has not called for a ceasefire outright.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) May 17, 2021
NEW: Netanyahu says Israeli strikes on #Gaza will continue.
“The directive is to continue to strike at the targets of terrorism.”
Israel making clear it does not want a ceasefire right now. And Biden admin not pressuring them to accept one – even as death Gaza toll mounts.
— Raf Sanchez (@rafsanchez) May 17, 2021
The White House released a readout of Biden’s call with Netanyahu last week, showing the president called for a path toward “sustainable calm.”
“[Biden] condemned the rocket attacks by Hamas and other terrorist groups, including against Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. He conveyed his unwavering support for Israel’s security and for Israel’s legitimate right to defend itself and its people, while protecting civilians,” the statement read.
Israel intercepts Gaza rockets with Iron Dome defence system pic.twitter.com/sMk2gxeIY2
— The Independent (@Independent) May 12, 2021
“He also conveyed the United States’ encouragement of a pathway toward restoring a sustainable calm. He shared his conviction that Jerusalem, a city of such importance to people of faith from around the world, must be a place of peace,” it continued. (RELATED: Israel Assassinates Top Hamas Commander, Islamist Soldiers In Targeted Airstrikes: Report)
Casualties from the conflict continue to rise. Israeli air strikes have killed at least 212 people, including at least 59 children and wounded about 1,400, according to the New York Times. One Israeli airstrike alone killed 42 Palestinians on Sunday.