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Biden discusses Gaza offensive with Netanyahu

Biden discusses Gaza offensive with Netanyahu U.S. President Joe Biden (photo: Getty Images)

U.S. President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu discussed the "phasing" of Israel's military campaign in Gaza, reports the White House.

Washington wants Jerusalem to move to less intense fighting against Hamas.

The American president emphasized the possibility of safely evacuating citizens from the ongoing fighting. The United States is concerned about the growing number of civilian casualties in Gaza.

"The leaders discussed Israel’s military campaign in Gaza to include its objectives and phasing. The President emphasized the critical need to protect the civilian population including those supporting the humanitarian aid operation," the White House said in a statement.

Netanyahu and Biden also discussed the importance of releasing all remaining hostages.

War in Israel

On October 7, Hamas militants invaded Israel. They killed and kidnapped soldiers and civilians. Israel responded by launching Operation Iron Swords and shelling the militants' locations.

On November 24, Israel signed an agreement with Hamas on a ceasefire and the release of hostages. The first group of hostages was released the same day.

The ceasefire lasted until December 1. Afterward, the IDF announced the breakdown of the agreement due to Hamas's shelling of Israeli territory.

On December 20, Israel offered the militants to suspend hostilities for a week. Tel Aviv offered to release 40 people, including women and children, as well as elderly men in need of urgent medical care. Hamas rejected Israel's offer to stop hostilities for a week for the exchange.

Earlier we reported that Netanyahu said during a phone call with Biden that Israel would not stop the operation in Gaza until its objectives were achieved.