Biden to Netanyahu: Protect civilians in Gaza or US policy will change

World | Author: Diana Kavardzhikova |April 5, 2024, Friday // 09:06
Bulgaria: Biden to Netanyahu: Protect civilians in Gaza or US policy will change Wikimedia Commons

U.S. President Joe Biden has issued a stark ultimatum to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: safeguard Palestinian civilians and foreign aid workers in Gaza or face potential repercussions from Washington, Reuters reported. This move comes amidst mounting pressure on Israel to alter its military tactics following a deadly attack that claimed the lives of seven aid workers and triggered global outrage.

The White House refrained from specifying the exact actions it expects from Netanyahu but hinted at possible consequences, such as slowing down U.S. arms transfers to Israel or tempering support at the United Nations. Analysts interpret this warning as a pivotal moment in U.S.-Israel relations, as Biden navigates pressures from progressive Democrats and pro-Israel voters ahead of the November elections.

The war in Gaza, which erupted following Hamas' attack on Israel, has resulted in devastating casualties, with tens of thousands of Palestinians killed, including many women and children. Biden's call for concrete measures to address civilian harm underscores growing concerns about the humanitarian crisis in the region.

Following a tense 30-minute call between Biden and Netanyahu, the White House emphasized the need for immediate action to protect civilians and aid workers. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken issued a blunt warning, stating that failure to see necessary changes would result in alterations to U.S. policy.

In response to Biden's ultimatum, the Israeli government announced several measures to increase aid flows to Gaza. However, it remains uncertain whether these steps will meet U.S. demands.

The turning point for Biden came after the deadly attack on aid workers, prompting him to confront Netanyahu about humanitarian concerns in Gaza. While Biden has long supported Israel, he appears to have reached a breaking point, signaling a potential shift in U.S. policy towards the conflict.

Analysts speculate on possible actions the U.S. could take, ranging from negotiating U.N. Security Council resolutions to imposing conditions on arms transfers. Despite Biden's frustration, drastic actions that could sever U.S.-Israeli ties entirely seem unlikely.

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Tags: Biden, Netanyahu, Gaza, U.S.

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