The US will make “important contributions” to the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip, says Blinken

Blinken said the US would “ensure that Hamas does not benefit from the aid.”

Blinken said the losses on both sides in the conflict between Israel and Hamas were “profound”.

“The losses are often reduced to numbers. But behind every number there is a person – a daughter, a son, a father, a mother, a grandparent, a best friend. And as the Talmud teaches, to lose a life is to lose the world, whether this life is Palestinian or Israeli, “said Blinken.

Israeli strikes have killed at least 232 Palestinians, including 65 children, during the recent conflict, according to the Hamas-led Ministry of Health in Gaza. According to the Israeli military and emergency services, at least 12 people, including two children, were killed in Israel by a militant Palestinian fire from the Gaza Strip.

Blinken spoke to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday after talks on the first day of his first official tour of the region.

He said the two had an in-depth discussion of Israel’s security needs, including the Iron Dome’s defense system.

Netanyahu urged the US not to revert to the Iranian nuclear deal known as the JCPOA. He said the deal would allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons and Israel reserves the right to defend itself.

In response, Blinken only said that Washington would “continue to consult” with Israel during the negotiations in Vienna.

Blinken spoke about the rights of Israelis and Palestinians, but did not specifically mention the two-state solution or suggest that full peace negotiations were imminent.

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