Blinken Comments On Gaza Conflict

Antony Blinken, the Secretary of State, has expressed concerns about the civilian death toll during the war between Israel and Hamas. On the CBS show “Face the Nation”, Blinken said that Israel’s actions have not been in line with international humanitarian law. He also mentioned that President Biden has been determined to support Israel in defending itself, but has also stressed the importance of protecting civilians and ensuring humanitarian aid reaches those in need.

Blinken was asked about President Biden’s comments in December, February, and just this past week. In December, Biden said that Israel conducted indiscriminate bombing, and in February he called their offensive “over the top”. Most recently, Biden said that he would not supply weapons to deal with population centers. When asked about whether Israel is living up to international humanitarian law standards, Blinken responded by saying that Israel has accountability processes to address any wrongdoing on their part.

The Secretary of State also mentioned a report that was released by the US government that outlines some concerns they have about humanitarian assistance during the conflict. The report also discusses concerns about the use of weapons, stating that in some instances, Israel may have acted in violation of international humanitarian law. However, Blinken also acknowledges the complexity of the military environment in which Israel is fighting, with Hamas hiding amongst civilians and using them as shields. He also mentions that Israel has hundreds of ongoing inquiries into incidents during the conflict, and criminal investigations into possible wrongdoing.

Blinken went on to clarify that there are ongoing assessments being done to determine the full extent of Israel’s actions during the conflict. He also emphasized the strong support that President Biden has shown for Israel, stating that “no president has done more to defend Israel when it really mattered”. He mentioned Biden’s visit to Israel during the war, as well as the US’s involvement in defending against an unprecedented Iranian attack on Israel.

The Secretary of State also addressed concerns about the delivery of weapons to Israel. Blinken denied that the US was slowing down any weapons deliveries beyond the 3,500 bombs that had been discussed previously. He stated that the US had been clear for many months about their concerns regarding a potential military operation in Rafah, where many people had been displaced to in Gaza. He stated that the US will not support a major military operation in the area without a credible plan to protect civilians.

Blinken concluded his interview by stating that the US will continue to monitor the situation in Gaza and assess Israel’s actions. He also reiterated the US’s support for Israel and their commitment to ensuring the safety of both Israelis and Palestinians. The Secretary of State also emphasized the need for a peaceful resolution to the conflict and stated that the US is working towards that goal. Ultimately, Blinken’s comments reflect the complex nature of the conflict and the US’s efforts to support Israel while also addressing concerns about civilian casualties and humanitarian aid.

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