Nikki Haley rejects Biden’s pressure on Israel for a ceasefire with Hamas

May 20, 2021 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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Former US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley rejected President Joe Biden’s pressure on Israel to end its counterterrorism Operation Guardian of the Walls calling it “unacceptable.”

US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, meets with Israeli President, Reuven Rivlin, during her official visit to Israel, Jerusalem. Jun 07, 2017. Photo by Hillel Maeir/TPS

Biden spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday for the fourth time in the past 10 days and “conveyed to the Prime Minister that he expected a significant de-escalation today on the path to a ceasefire,” a clear message that he wanted Israel to stop its campaign against the Hamas terror organization.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken also spoke with Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi and “reinforced the message that the US expects to see de-escalation on the path to a ceasefire.”

Ashkenazi said that he told Blinken that “Israel must continue to act against Hamas and the terrorist organizations in Gaza until peace and security are restored to the citizens of Israel.”

Similarly, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz spoke on Wednesday with US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and told him that “with every passing day the IDF is reaching significant achievements that considerably diminish the military capacity of Hamas.”

Gantz told Austin that Israel “intends to act responsibly, in terms of its defence and foreign policy, and to work with moderate forces in the region.”

Responding to Biden’s demand of Israel, Haley noted that Biden was calling for Israel to de-escalate “while the terrorist group Hamas is still firing rockets at Israeli citizens”.

“It would be unacceptable if one of our allies called for de-escalation if Washington DC were targeted by rockets,” she said. “We must stand with Israel against terrorism.”

Netanyahu himself said he “especially appreciate[s] the support of our friend US President Joe Biden, for the State of Israel’s right to self-defense.”

However, he said he is “determined to continue this operation until its objective is achieved: to restore quiet and security to you, citizens of Israel.”

“This is the natural right of Israel,” he underscored.

Israel Hayom correspondent Ariel Kahana quoted a source who rejected the reports on a confrontation between Biden and Netanyahu and said that the conversation was “respectful and between friends.”

Hamas continued to bombard cities and towns across southern Israel on Wednesday night while the Israeli Air Force continued its campaign to decimate Hamas’ terror infrastructure in the Strip.

Estimate in Israel says that the operation is nearing a conclusion, possibly by the weekend.

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