President Joe Biden called for a “pause” in the Israel-Hamas war after being confronted by a heckler who was demanding a “cease-fire.”
While appearing at a fundraiser event in Minnesota on Wednesday, an audience member interrupted Biden’s speech saying that “as a rabbi” he needed the president to “call for a cease-fire” immediately. Biden responded to the heckler, saying that there needs to be a pause to allow prisoners to leave.
“I think we need a pause. A pause means give time to get the prisoners out,” Biden said.
“I’m the guy that convinced Bibi to call for a cease-fire to let the prisoners out. I’m the guy that talked to Sisi to convince him to open the door,” the president continued, talking about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Biden was interrupted at a fundraiser in Minneapolis tonight by a protester calling for a ceasefire. He responded that he supports a humanitarian pause to allow for the release of hostages. “I think we need a pause. A pause means give time to get the prisoners out,” Biden said,…
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) November 1, 2023
White House national security spokesperson John Kirby has maintained that the United States believes that a cease-fire in the conflict would only benefit Hamas, though Kirby did say the country supports a pause in the conflict to allow civilians to leave Gaza.
Biden’s call for a pause comes as the administration is facing increased pressure to take such a stance while showing more support for civilians in Gaza. Young Democrats are threatening to withhold their vote from Biden, claiming they feel “betrayed” because of his pro-Israel stance while long-time allies of the president’s are warning that his position could cost him supporters. The National Muslim Democratic Council demanded that Biden call for a cease-fire by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, or they will “mobilize Muslim, Arab, and allied voters” to keep votes from the president in his re-election efforts. (RELATED: White House Announces Anti-Islamophobia Strategy Amid Large Spike In Antisemitism)
“This is incredibly complicated for the Israelis,” Biden said Wednesday. “It’s incredibly complicated for the Muslim world as well… I supported a two state solution, I have from the very beginning. The fact is the matter is that Hamas is a terrorist organization. A flat-out terrorist organization.”