US President Joe Biden Meets Jordan's King Abdullah as Gaza Ceasefire Hopes Dim

May 07, 2024, 08.25 AM | Source: Reuters
US President Joe Biden Meets Jordan's King Abdullah as Gaza Ceasefire Hopes Dim

ILUSTRASI. Jordanian King Abdullah II's meeting with US President Joe Biden in May 2022, the King of Jordan said that during the meeting there were discussions to continue advancing Jordan's strong US partnership. He thanked the President of the United States, the American people, and Congress for their friendship and support, and looked forward to building better relations. Photo : X /@KingAbdullahII

USA - WASHINGTON - President Joe Biden will meet Middle East ally, Jordan's King Abdullah II, at the White House on Monday with prospects for a Gaza ceasefire appearing slim and Palestinian Islamist group Hamas and Israeli officials blaming each other for the impasse.

On Sunday, Hamas reiterated its demand for an end to the war in exchange for the freeing of hostages, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flatly ruled that out. Hamas also attacked the Kerem Shalom crossing into Gaza that Israel said killed three of its soldiers.

A Jordanian diplomat told Reuters Monday's meeting between Biden and King Abdullah is not a formal bilateral meeting but an informal private meeting.

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It comes as the Biden administration and Israeli officials remain at odds over Israel's planned military incursion in the southern Gaza city of Rafah where it told Palestinians to start evacuating some parts on Monday.

Biden last met King Abdullah at the White House in February and the two longtime allies discussed a daunting list of challenges, including the looming Israeli ground offensive in southern Gaza and the suffering of Palestinian civilians.

Jordan and other Arab states have been highly critical of Israel's actions and have been demanding a ceasefire since mid-October as civilian casualties began to skyrocket.

The war began after Hamas stunned Israel with a cross-border raid on Oct. 7 in which 1,200 people were killed and 252 hostages taken, according to Israeli tallies.

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More than 34,600 Palestinians have been killed and more than 77,000 wounded in Israel's assault, according to Gaza's health ministry.

Biden last spoke to Netanyahu on April 28 and "reiterated his clear position" on a possible invasion of Rafah, the White House said. The U.S. president has been vocal in his demand that Israel not undertake a ground offensive in Rafah without a plan to protect Palestinian civilians.

With pro-Palestinian protests erupting across U.S. college campuses, Biden faces increasing pressure politically to convince Israel to hold off on an invasion. Biden addressed the campus unrest over the war in Gaza last week but said the campus protests had not forced him to reconsider his policies in the Middle East.

Editor: Syamsul Azhar

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