Biden and King Abdullah Call for Protection of Civilians in Gaza, Urge Against Rafah Offensive

In a recent meeting in Washington, President Joe Biden and Jordanian King Abdullah urged Israel to consider the safety of over 1 million Palestinians in Rafah, Gaza Strip, and to refrain from launching a large-scale offensive. The leaders called for a sustained ceasefire and the protection of civilians, especially women and children, who have been severely affected by the conflict. They also discussed the potential humanitarian catastrophe that could ensue if a ground campaign is launched in Rafah, where half of Gaza’s population resides.

  • President Biden and Jordanian King Abdullah met to discuss the situation in Rafah, Gaza Strip.
  • Biden appealed for the safety of over 1 million Palestinians sheltering in Rafah and urged Israel to avoid a large assault.
  • The conflict escalated when Hamas attacked Israel on October 7th.
  • Recent Israeli airstrikes have resulted in at least 70 casualties.
  • The United States is working on a deal for a six-week ceasefire to provide a window for a more enduring solution.
  • Nearly 100,000 people in the conflict area have been killed, injured, or are missing, with the majority being women and children.
  • King Abdullah’s visit to Washington is significant as he is the first Arab leader to meet President Biden since the conflict intensified.
  • King Abdullah advocates for an immediate, lasting ceasefire and humanitarian aid for Gaza, as well as a long-term two-state solution.
  • Despite a rare rebuke from Biden on Israel’s military actions, U.S. military aid to Israel continues unchanged.
  • Jordan maintains its importance as a regional ally to the U.S., with King Abdullah leveraging his close relationship with President Biden.
  • Street protests in Jordan have called for abandoning the peace treaty with Israel and defense agreements with the U.S., though these actions are unlikely.
  • An assault on Rafah could have diplomatic consequences, further involving Egypt and potentially leading to a regional security threat.
  • Egypt and U.S. officials are discussing a six-week ceasefire in Cairo, which could be compromised by a military operation in Rafah.
  • Dr. Alam Salah, a senior lecturer in politics and international relations, highlighted the potential for a humanitarian and security catastrophe in the region.

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