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Thursday, July 18, 2024

US will ‘forever’ stand with Israel – Biden

The American president has pledged unwavering support to the country after the strike on a Gaza hospital that many blame on Jewish state

US President Joe Biden has vowed continued support for Israel, during his visit, on Wednesday, in the wake of the deadly Gaza hospital attack that many Muslim nations are blaming on West Jerusalem.

Washington would forever stand at its ally’s side, Biden pledged, while dismissing claims about Israel’s responsibility for Tuesday’s strike that killed hundreds, according to a Gaza Health Ministry tally.

Read more: Biden warns Israel against Gaza ‘occupation’

“I come to Israel with a single message – you’re not alone,” he said after a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “As long as the United States stands, and we will stand forever, we will not let you ever be alone,” the US president added.

Biden also called the October 7 attack on Israel launched by the Gaza-based Hamas militant group the deadliest one for the Jewish people since the Holocaust, adding that Washington would not stay idle in the face of a similar threat in the future.

“It has brought to the surface painful memories and scars left by millennia of antisemitism and the genocide of the Jewish people,” the US president said, adding that his nation “will not stand by and do nothing again. Not today, not tomorrow, not ever.”

Earlier, Biden also denied that Israel was responsible for Tuesday’s strike on a hospital in Gaza that killed an estimated 500 people. The US leader put the blame on Palestinian militant groups instead. When asked by journalists about what made him so sure of that, Biden replied: “the data I was shown by my Defense Department.” He did not provide any further details about the alleged evidence.

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The strike provoked an uproar around the world. Many Muslim nations, including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and Jordan, blamed the Israeli military for the bombing of the health facility. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on humanity to “take action to stop Israel’s unprecedented brutality in Gaza” in the wake of the hospital attack he said was “devoid of fundamental human values.”

Russia and the United Arab Emirates have called for an emergency UN Security Council meeting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict due to the attack.

The Israeli military strongly denied responsibility for the incident. The strike was a result of a failed rocket launched by a Palestinian Islamic Jihad militant group falling on the facility, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said, citing intelligence data.

On Tuesday, Bloomberg reported that Biden was supposedly planning to propose a $100 billion aid bill that would include funding for Israel, Ukraine, Taiwan and the southern US border with Mexico. West Jerusalem had previously asked for $10 billion in “emergency” aid from the US, according to the New York Times.