US official tells Israel of need to coordinate humanitarian, military Gaza operations

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US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told his Israeli counterpart Yoav Gallant in a call on Wednesday of the need for an effective mechanism to coordinate humanitarian and military operations in Gaza, the Pentagon said.

Last week, Austin spoke with Gallant in a phone call where he reinforced the “unquestionable necessity” of protecting civilians and ensuring the uninterrupted flow humanitarian aid before any potential military operation in Rafah, the Pentagon reported.

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The two officials also discussed Iran’s actions in the Middle East, other regional threats and aid into Gaza, the Pentagon said earlier this week.

Austin discussed “the importance of increasing and sustaining” the flow of humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza, including via a new route from Ashdod Port in Israel, the Pentagon added.

With agencies

Read more: Israel briefed White House official on plans to curb civilian harm in Rafah

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