Biden holds separate calls with Palestinians’ Abbas, Israel’s Netanyahu

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US President Joe Biden held separate phone calls on Saturday with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, statements from the Israeli and Palestinian leaders’ offices said.

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Netanyahu told Biden that “unity and determination” were needed to achieve Israel’s combat goals against Gaza’s Hamas rulers, Netanyahu’s office said, adding that he thanked the president for his support.

Abbas’ office said the Palestinian leader told Biden he completely rejects the displacement of Palestinians from Gaza, as Israel retaliates for a deadly Hamas attack on its territory.

A US official confirmed the two calls.

Israel

Biden reiterated unwavering US support for Israel in the call with Netanyahu, the White House said.

“President Biden discussed with Prime Minister Netanyahu US coordination with the United Nations, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, and others in the region to ensure innocent civilians have access to water, food, and medical care,” the White House said in a statement. “President Biden affirmed his support for all efforts to protect civilians.”

Palestine

Biden underscored Palestinians’ “right to dignity and self-determination” while also condemning Hamas in the phone call with Abbas.

“Hamas does not stand for the Palestinian people’s right to dignity and self-determination,” Biden told Abbas, according to a White House statement about the conversation between the two leaders, in which Biden also pledged “full support” to the Palestinian Authority.

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