Middle East

Biden says Netanyahu is “hurting more than helping” Israel by failing to minimise casualties

US President Joe Biden has said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is “hurting more than helping” Israel in failing to limit civilian casualties.

Speaking to MSNBC’s Jonathan Capehart in an interview Saturday, Biden said: “What’s happening is he has a right to defend Israel, a right to continue to pursue Hamas.

“But he must, he must, he must pay more attention to the innocent lives being lost as a consequence of the actions taken.
“He’s hurting – I – in my view, he’s hurting Israel more than helping Israel by making the rest of the world – it’s contrary to what Israel stands for. And I think it’s a big mistake.”

Biden has for months warned that Israel risks losing international support over mounting civilian casualties in Gaza, where the civilian death toll has passed 31,000.

His latest remarks point to the increasingly strained relationship between the two leaders.

Biden said a potential Israeli invasion of the Gaza city of Rafah, where more than 1.5 million Palestinians are sheltering, is “a red line” for him.

However, he said he would not cut off weapons like the Iron Dome missile interceptors which protect the Israeli civilian populace from rocket attacks in the region.

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