US News

Biden insists Gaza ceasefire decision ahead of Ramadan was “challenging” despite US denial of airdrop casualties

US President Joe Biden has expressed challenges in reaching a six-week ceasefire deal in Gaza before Ramadan begins.

His remarks follow US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s statement putting the onus on Hamas to make progress towards a truce.

“The ball is in their court,” he said, emphasizing the US’s intense efforts to secure a ceasefire.

Despite the US targeting a truce before Ramadan, negotiations in Cairo involving Hamas concluded without an agreement.

Israel and Hamas are blaming each other for the lack of progress in reaching a ceasefire before Ramadan.

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How will further aid get into Gaza?

The Pentagon has refuted claims that US aid airdrops resulted in civilian casualties in Gaza on Friday.

Reports of civilian deaths following aid drops were dismissed, confirming the safe landing of all aid bundles on the ground.

Various countries, including the US, the UK, and Jordan, have resorted to airdropping aid packages into Gaza amid a worsening humanitarian crisis.

US forces have conducted a total of 124,000 meals airdrops into Gaza so far, providing smaller quantities compared to conventional aid deliveries.

Read more:
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The West has lost patience with Israel over aid to Gaza
Biden’s Gaza port gamble risks drawing US into war

The US has announced plans to establish a temporary port on the Gaza coast to bolster aid flow into the region, with deployment expected to take about 60 days.

While the process might engage 1,000 US military personnel, no troops will be stationed in Gaza itself, ensuring aid delivery efficiency.

British Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron disclosed UK’s involvement in the maritime corridor development from the outset, aiding in aid pre-screening.

Despite supporting the US initiative, Israel is urged to open its Ashdod port for aid delivery until the new port construction is completed, citing frustrations over inadequate aid reaching Gaza.

Following prolonged warnings of famine risk, many Palestinians, especially in the devastated north areas, now confront starvation.

Reports indicate at least 20 deaths from malnutrition and dehydration in Kamal Adwan and Shifa hospitals in the north, with a majority being children.

Israel’s military response in Gaza stemmed from Hamas attacks in early October, resulting in casualties and abductions.

Gaza health authorities under Hamas note over 30,800 Palestinian deaths since the commencement of the Israeli offensive.

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