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Blinken urges Israel to establish safe zones in Gaza before resuming combat

Blinken urges Israel to establish safe zones in Gaza before resuming combat U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken (Photo: Getty Images)
Author: Daria Shekina

When the IDF resumes military operations, Israel should clearly mark several safe zones in the southern and central parts of the Gaza Strip for civilians to avoid hostilities, says U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Blinken acknowledges that these measures are complicated due to Hamas using human shields but insists that Israel is still obligated to minimize harm to civilian populations.

He begins the press conference by stating that the Biden administration's "immediate focus is on working with our partners to extend the pause" in hostilities between Israel and Hamas to enable more hostages to be evacuated from Gaza and more aid to reach the Gaza Strip.

"We will not stop working until we get every hostage back home with their families and loved ones," said the politician, adding that the amount of aid reaching the Gaza Strip has "significantly" increased.

He also adds that the U.S. continues to support Israel's goal of dismantling Hamas in Gaza, stating that the deadly shooting in Jerusalem that occurred earlier today "underscored" the intentions of the terrorist group.

Ceasefire between Israel and Hamas

The ceasefire between Israel and Hamas began on November 24. At that time, the conflict parties agreed to a four-day ceasefire. After that, Israel and Hamas decided to extend the ceasefire for two more days on the condition that the militants release more hostages.

On November 29, it was reported that Israel was discussing with Hamas an extension of the ceasefire for another two days. For this, the militants were required to meet Tel Aviv's conditions.

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu assured that Jerusalem would continue military operations in the Gaza Strip after the return of the hostages.