Biden dials Netanyahu, Abbas

Washington, May 16 (Bureau) US President Joe Biden on Sunday called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas over the current tense situation in the region. The US President told the Israeli leader that he supported Israel’s right to self-defence against rocket attacks from Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza but expressed concern over fatalities on both sides.

He condemned these indiscriminate attacks against towns and cities across Israel and shared his grave concern about the intercommunal violence across Israel. Mr Biden told his Palestinian counterpart that he was committed to “strengthen the US-Palestinian partnership”. He updated President Abbas on US diplomatic engagement on the ongoing conflict and stressed the need for Hamas to cease firing rockets into Israel.

The US President discussed the current tensions in Jerusalem with both the leaders separately and expressed a shared desire for Jerusalem to be a place of peaceful coexistence for people of all faiths and backgrounds.