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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Joe Biden. (Photo: via Israeli PM TW page, file)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The US president held a telephone discussion with Netanyahu last Thursday following the Israeli airstrike that killed seven aid workers.

US President Joe Biden has said Israel is not doing enough to ensure that humanitarian aid is getting into the besieged Gaza Strip.

“I have been very blunt and straightforward with the (Israeli) Prime Minister (Benjamin Netanyahu), as well as his War Cabinet, as well as the Cabinet,” Biden told reporters at a press briefing alongside Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the White House on Wednesday.

“And the fact of the matter is that Bibi and I had a long discussion,” he added.

The US president held a telephone discussion with Netanyahu last Thursday following the Israeli airstrike that killed seven aid workers.

Biden said the Israeli leader “agreed to do several things that related to, number one, getting more aid — both food and medicine — into Gaza and reducing significantly the attempts — the civilian casualties in any action taken in the region.”

The US president noted that “they’re getting in somewhere, in the last three days, over a hundred trucks.”

“It’s not enough,” he said. “But it needs to be — be more, and there’s one more opening that has to take place in the north” – a likely reference to the Erez crossing along the northern Gazan border with Israel.

“So, we’ll see what he does in terms of meeting the commitments he made to me,” Biden stressed.

‘A Mistake’

Biden’s remarks follow those he made in a television interview aired on Tuesday, in which he said he disagreed with Netanyahu’s handling of the war on Gaza, calling it “a mistake.”

The US president said there was “no excuse” for humanitarian aid not being allowed into the besieged enclave, and urged “a ceasefire” to allow “or the next six, eight weeks total access to all food and medicine going into the country.”

He also “made clear that U.S. policy with respect to Gaza will be determined by our assessment of Israel’s immediate action on these steps.”

UNRWA, the largest humanitarian aid organization in Gaza, has said it continues to “face disproportionate restrictions” on access to the besieged enclave, with no food convoys approved to the north since January.

Gaza, the organization emphasized, is “on the brink of famine,” with 1.1 million people—half of its population—experiencing catastrophic food insecurity due to the intense conflict and severe restrictions on humanitarian access.

Over 33,500 Killed

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 33,545 Palestinians have been killed, and 76,0949 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in the enclave.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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