“I believe the Palestinians and Israelis equally deserve to live safely and securely, and enjoy equal measures of freedom, prosperity and democracy,” Biden said from the White House. “My administration will continue our quiet, relentless diplomacy toward that end. I believe we have a genuine opportunity to make progress, and I am committed to working for it.”
Biden said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had agreed to a mutual, unconditional cease fire, and that the Egyptians had informed them that Hamas and other groups in Gaza had also agreed.
“These hostilities have resulted in the tragic deaths of so many civilians, including children. I send my sincere condolences to all the families, Israeli and Palestinian, who have lost loved ones.”
Biden vowed to work with the United Nations and other international stakeholders to provide humanitarian assistance and to marshal support for Gaza reconstruction efforts.
“We will do this in full partnership with the Palestinian Authority, not Hamas, Authority, in a manner that does not permit Hamas to simply restock its military arsenal,” Biden said.
The New York Times reported that the cease fire will begin at 7 PM ET.
According to the Associated Press, at least 230 Palestinians have been killed, including many civilians. Twelve people in Israel were killed. The fighting began when Hamas fired rockets toward Jerusalem, where there had been clashes between Palestinian protesters and police. Israel launched air strikes in Gaza, as its Iron Dome system intercepted thousands of missiles fired at Israeli cities.
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