The United States stressed on Friday that it would support a “pause” in Israeli military operations in the Gaza Strip so that humanitarian aid and fuel can enter the area and so that hostages can be released.
“We absolutely believe that if a pause can be made to allow the release of the hostages that’s something we fully support and we believe Israel should support it,” White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby .
He stressed that although Washington has had conversations about this matter with Israel, they will not announce anything at the moment.
Kirby said his government would support a “humanitarian moratorium” on the entry of material into the Strip and the release of captives.
“If that requires a local temporary stop to do so, we fully support it. We support any efforts that can be made to bring them home safely to their families, but we will be careful what we spoke publicly” about that, he concluded.
The White House representative wanted to clarify, however, that the US has not set a “red line” for Israel.
“We are not putting red lines on Israel. We continue to support their security needs. (…) They are against Hamas. (…) And at the same time, from the beginning we have and will continue to talk to them about the way they do it,” he said.
The US, he added, is not “holding back” from expressing concerns about “civilian casualties, collateral damage and the approach they may choose.” “That’s what friends do. We’re friends and we have conversations,” he added.
His statement comes on the same day that Israel announced that it will henceforth increase the intensity of ground operations against the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas in the Gaza Strip, which has been completely cut off due to heavy bombardment in recent years. . .