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HomeLifestyleNetanyahu Cancels U.S.-Israel Conferences on Rafah, to Protest Stop-Fireplace Decision

Netanyahu Cancels U.S.-Israel Conferences on Rafah, to Protest Stop-Fireplace Decision


For the more and more tense U.S.-Israel relationship, the fallout from passage of the U.N. cease-fire decision was instant, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu mentioned Monday that he wouldn’t ship a deliberate high-level delegation to Washington for conferences with U.S. officers.

President Biden had requested the conferences to debate options to a deliberate Israeli offensive into Rafah, the southern Gaza metropolis the place greater than one million individuals have sought refuge, an offensive that American officers have mentioned would create an humanitarian catastrophe.

America had vetoed three earlier U.N. Safety Council resolutions calling for an finish to the conflict in Gaza between Israel and Hamas, agreeing with Israel’s argument that it will depart Hamas intact and in charge of the enclave after it carried out the Oct. 7 assault on Israel.

However on Monday, when the Safety Council took up a much less strongly worded decision, calling for a cease-fire for the holy month of Ramadan, the U.S. consultant abstained, permitting the measure to move.

Mr. Netanyahu, in an announcement, denounced the abstention as “a retreat from the constant American place for the reason that starting of the conflict,” one which “provides Hamas hope that worldwide stress will allow them to realize a cease-fire with out liberating the hostages.”

In response, he mentioned, the Israeli delegation that was to debate Rafah wouldn’t go to Washington. The sensible impression of his determination could also be restricted — Mr. Netanyahu has mentioned repeatedly that though he would hear out the White Home place, the offensive would proceed — however it’s nonetheless a pointy, public rebuke of Israel’s closest and strongest ally.

Briefing reporters on the White Home, John F. Kirby, a spokesman for the Nationwide Safety Council, insisted there had been no change within the American place, and mentioned that the US had abstained, reasonably than vote for the U.N. measure, mainly as a result of “this decision textual content didn’t embrace a condemnation of Hamas.”

He mentioned there had been no official notification that the delegation from Israel was not coming to Washington, however added: “We had been trying ahead to having a possibility to talk to a delegation later this week on exploring viable choices and options to a serious floor offensive in Rafah.”

“We felt we had helpful classes to share,” Mr. Kirby mentioned. He famous that Yoav Gallant, the Israeli protection minister, was in Washington and was nonetheless anticipated to fulfill with President Biden’s nationwide safety adviser, Jake Sullivan, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and Protection Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III.

Mr. Gallant, earlier than assembly with Mr. Sullivan, gave no signal Israel would comply with a cease-fire. “We are going to function in opposition to Hamas all over the place — together with in locations the place we’ve not but been,” he mentioned. He added, “We’ve got no ethical proper to cease the conflict whereas there are nonetheless hostages held in Gaza.”

The U.N. decision and the American function in it drew indignant responses from far-right components of Israel’s authorities. Itamar Ben-Gvir, the nationwide safety minister, known as the transfer “proof that President Biden just isn’t prioritizing Israel and the free world’s victory over terrorism, however reasonably his personal political concerns.” The decision, he mentioned in an announcement, ought to immediate Israel to accentuate reasonably than average its army marketing campaign.

Israel has confronted intense worldwide criticism over its conduct of the conflict in retaliation for the Oct. 7 assault — a bombing marketing campaign and floor invasion which have killed some 30,000 individuals, displaced most of Gaza’s inhabitants and diminished a lot of the territory to ruins.

President Biden and different U.S. officers have change into more and more, overtly crucial of the conflict effort, saying that Israel ought to do extra to keep away from civilian casualties and permit extra assist into Gaza — an unusually stark breach between the 2 nations.

Hamas is holding greater than 100 hostages seized throughout the Oct. 7 assault, and negotiations have been underway for the discharge of hostages in return for Israel liberating Palestinian inmates in its prisons. The U.N. decision requires the instant launch of hostages.

Hamas welcomed the U.N. Safety Council decision in an announcement on Telegram, including that the Palestinian armed group was prepared “to instantly have interaction on a prisoner trade course of that will result in the discharge of prisoners on each side.”

“Hamas calls upon the Safety Council to stress Israel to adjust to a cease-fire and finish the conflict, the genocide and ethnic cleaning in opposition to our individuals,” the group mentioned.

David E. Sanger and Cassandra Vinograd contributed reporting.

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