Joe Biden, US President’s landmark trip to Israel tomorrow is a dramatic display of support for the US ally amid the war in Gaza.
Joe Biden’s visit is a statement of ‘solidarity with Israel’ and an ‘ironclad commitment to its security’ says Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
Blinken described just days after Hamas fighters broke through the heavily fortified border, shooting, stabbing, and burning to death more than 1,400 people, most of them civilians.
But the air strikes have flattened entire neighborhoods in the blockaded Gaza Strip and killed at least 2,750 people, most of them civilians.
The bombardment, coupled with an Israeli order to evacuate the north of the Gaza Strip that borders Israel, has forced more than a million Palestinians to flee their homes for the south of the enclave since the 10-day conflict began, according to the UN agency serving Palestinian agencies (UNRWA).
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Biden’s visit will also seek to avert a regional conflagration with Hamas backer Iran, which on Monday warned of a possible “pre-emptive action” against Israel “in the coming hours”.
Repeated fire in recent days along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon has claimed lives on both sides and compounded fears of a regional spillover of the war.
Biden’s visit also comes amid frantic diplomatic efforts to ease the deepening humanitarian crisis in Gaza after waves of Israeli retaliatory air strikes on the Hamas-ruled enclave.
Meanwhile, World Health Organization regional director Ahmed Al-Mandhari told AFP that Gaza was barrelling toward “real catastrophe”.
“There are 24 hours of water, electricity and fuel left” he said.
After Israel, Biden will travel to Jordan where he will meet Jordanian King Abdullah II, Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi.