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Antony Blinken Laments “Far Too Much Loss of Life” in Gaza as He Reasserts U.S. Support for Israel

HeadlineJan 10, 2024

Israel has intensified its bombing and ground assault in central and southern Gaza. Dozens of people were killed in overnight attacks, including in the so-called safe zone of Rafah city. In the occupied West Bank, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah today as protesters outside condemned the U.S.'s funding and backing of Israel's devastating assault on Gaza, which has now killed over 23,000 Palestinians in just over three months. On Tuesday, Blinken met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, reaffirming the U.S.’s “unique bond” with Israel and advocating for a regional resolution “that includes a pathway to a Palestinian state.” Blinken addressed reporters from Tel Aviv.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken: “We want this war to end as soon as possible. There’s been far too much loss of life, far too much suffering. But it’s vital that Israel achieve its very legitimate objectives of ensuring that October 7th can never happen again. … In today’s meetings, I was also crystal clear: Palestinian civilians must be able to return home as soon as conditions allow. They must not be pressed to leave Gaza.”

Blinken also rejected South Africa’s genocide case against Israel at the International Court of Justice, which starts Thursday, as “meritless.”

A staggering 1.9 million Gazans have been displaced, over 85% of the territory’s population. This is 8-year-old Abdel Jaber Mohammed al-Farra in Khan Younis, who was forced to flee his home with his father and younger brother.

Abdel Jaber Mohammed al-Farra: “We were living safely. Now we are left on the streets, no tent or anything. We are staying in the street. We have no place or anything. … I never saw bombing like this in my life. I was in third grade. I did not complete my school year. This is something I never saw in my life. … The situation is very tragic. We’re asking all countries to send aid, open the Rafah border crossing to get all the aid in, to end the war, end this injustice against us.”

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