Washington: US President Biden told Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu on Monday that he supports a ceasefire in bloody exchanges between Israel and Palestine, but he did not publicly demand a ceasefire.
In a phone call with the Israeli prime minister, “the president expressed his support for a ceasefire and discussed US engagement with Egypt and other partners towards that end,” the White House said.
Biden has so far resisted joining other world leaders and much of his own Democratic party in calling for an immediate ceasefire in Israel.
In a statement, the White House said Biden reiterated what has been his main message so far: “his firm support for Israel’s right to defend itself against indiscriminate rocket attacks.”
Biden “encouraged Israel to make every effort to ensure the protection of innocent civilians,” the statement said.
But the White House has made it clear that it does not condemn any aspect of Israel’s ongoing military strikes, and said that close US allies have reason to respond forcefully to Hamas’s rocket salvo.
Officials suggested that more criticisms should be conveyed privately.