The US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, met this Friday in Tel Aviv with the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, after his arrival in Israel this Friday. This is the third visit to the country since the war with the Islamist group Hamas broke out on October 7 and, in addition to the meeting with Netanyahu, the details of which have not yet emerged, Blinken plans to speak with President Isaac Herzog and members of the Israeli War Cabinet.
Before starting his trip, Blinken wrote on the social network that he will work “with regional leaders to protect civilians” and “preventing the spread of conflict” and opted for “broader peace and security in the region.” “We are determined to avoid an escalation on any fronts, whether in southern Lebanon, the West Bank or anywhere else in the region,” he said before speaking to the press on a trip that will also take him to Jordan and Turkey.
Returned to Israel for meetings with @IsraeliPM Netanyahu, President @Isaac_Herzog, and other government leaders. Will discuss Israel’s right to defend itself and our work to get humanitarian assistance to civilians in Gaza. pic.twitter.com/2SHzgEhT4w
— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) November 3, 2023
“We are making sure that this message gets through. No one is interested in this development and some of the other parties involved recognize that, but we will work on it every day,” he declared.
The death toll in the Strip rose to 9,061, including 3,760 children, while in Israel there were 1,400 dead and more than 200 kidnapped by the Hamas group.
Four visits from the United States in less than a month
Visits from the United States have been frequent since the war began. The first is Blinken’s, made a day after the war with Islamist militias in Gaza broke out. A trip where he also visited other countries in the region – Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Jordan – to try to stop the conflict.
Days later, on October 14, the US Secretary of State made another quick visit to Israel where Blinken accused Hamas of exploiting civilians in Gaza like human shields. The meeting was interrupted by air raid sirens and the two had to take refuge in a bunker for several minutes, according to the United States. When the danger had passed, they resumed the meeting in a command center at a headquarters of the Israeli Defense Ministry.
The third visit of the Americans was by President Joe Biden, on October 18where he argued for the need for a “pause” in Israeli bombing of the Gaza Strip to remove Hamas hostages from the territory, and reiterated his support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict .
Washington called for “humanitarian pauses” in Gaza for the first time on October 24 that could bring aid to the civilian population of the Strip during a speech by Blinken before the UN Security Council, although he did not participate in the request for a cease-fire made by the United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, in soon.