Skip to content

US’ Blinken urges swift ceasefire in Israel-Gaza conflict amid hostage crisis, saying ‘will not rest’ until issue is tackled

US' Blinken urges swift ceasefire in Israel-Gaza conflict amid hostage crisis, saying 'will not rest' until issue is tackled
By Yagiz Efe Parmaksiz
May 1, 2024 9:37 PM

During his visit to Tel Aviv, Blinken met with Israeli supporters and emphasized the importance of a truce in exchange for captives

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has made a strong case for a truce on Wednesday amid rising hostilities between Israel and Hamas, highlighting how urgent it is to resolve the current hostage situation.

The Biden administration’s dedication to mediating peace and guaranteeing the safe release of hostages taken by Hamas on Oct. 7 is further evidenced by Blinken’s visit to the area.

When Blinken first arrived in Tel Aviv, he was met with both admiration and criticism by Israeli supporters, while having to deal with the challenges of negotiating the complex political environment.

In the midst of applause for President Biden’s position, Blinken did not waste any time in meeting with the impacted families and reaffirming that their situation was crucial to US diplomacy.

Blinken made a moving speech to demonstrators in which he emphasized how important it is that Hamas agree to a truce in exchange for captives, calling it “very strong” and essential to regional peace. His remarks had a sense of urgency that mirrored the feelings of families hoping for their loved ones’ safe return.

Nonetheless, there are still obstacles in the way of peace, as seen by the differences in opinions among Israeli officials.

Although Yair Lapid, the head of the opposition, encouraged Prime Minister Netanyahu to give discussions first priority, internal discord poses a threat to unity and might delay the settlement process.

As Blinken conversed with Israeli authorities, such as President Herzog and Prime Minister Netanyahu, the nature of the dispute was evident. Netanyahu has expressed opposition to a military incursion in Rafah again, but his unwavering commitment to offensive action highlights the difficulties in using diplomacy when confronted with hard-line attitudes.

President Herzog expressed the same views as Blinken did when he emphasized how crucial it is to achieve a truce and give the safe return of hostages first priority. The fact that Hamas was about to respond to an offer that would lead to a brief pause of hostilities highlighted the gravity of the situation.

Apart from the pressing necessity of initiating ceasefire talks, Blinken’s visit highlights wider humanitarian issues, including the potential for hunger in the Gaza Strip. Blinken’s involvement in Ashdod serves as a stark reminder of the human cost of violence, necessitating a coordinated international response as efforts to expand aid gain pace.

Source: AFP

Last Updated:  Jun 3, 2024 4:55 PM