White House persists in advocating for Gaza truce extension amid renewed hostilities.
Ongoing efforts with Israel, Egypt, and Qatar to extend humanitarian pause.
Antony Blinken urges truce extension during visit to Israel and Palestine.
The White House announced on Friday its commitment to persist in advocating for an extension of the Gaza truce, even as renewed and intense hostilities flared up in the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict.
“We continue to work with Israel, Egypt, and Qatar on efforts to extend the humanitarian pause in Gaza,” a White House National Security Council spokesperson said.
During the week-long truce, Hamas militants freed 80 Israeli hostages in return for the release of 240 Palestinian prisoners. Additionally, more humanitarian aid was delivered to the war-ravaged Gaza region.
But the prospects of reestablishing a truce were being stymied because “Hamas has so far failed to produce a list of hostages that would enable a further extension of the pause,” the NSC spokesperson said. President Joe Biden and his national security team “will continue to remain deeply engaged as we look to free the remaining hostages,” the NSC spokesperson said.
During his visit to the region on Thursday, Antony Blinken, the top diplomat from Washington, urged an extension of the truce while engaging with Israeli and Palestinian officials. The conflict ignited on October 7 when Hamas militants breached Gaza’s militarized border into Israel.
In the unprecedented assault, Hamas was responsible for approximately 1,200 casualties, predominantly civilians, and the abduction of around 240 individuals, as reported by Israeli authorities.
In retaliation, Israel pledged to eradicate Hamas, initiating an air and ground military campaign in Gaza.
According to Hamas authorities in control of Gaza, this campaign has resulted in the deaths of nearly 15,000 people, primarily civilians.
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