Antony Blinken Says “More Needs To Be Done” To Protect Gaza Citizens

Antony Blinken Says 'Much More Needs To Be Done' To Protect Gaza Citizens

Antony Blinken’s visit to India is the last stop in a marathon trip. (File)

New Delhi:

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Friday he welcomed Israel’s agreed pauses in its Gaza offensive, but that more needed to be done.

“Far too many Palestinians have been killed. Far too many who suffered these past weeks, and we want to do everything possible to prevent harm to them and to maximise the assistance that gets to them,” Blinken said, speaking in New Delhi.

Fighting has raged in northern Gaza since gunmen from the Islamist group Hamas poured over the border into Israel and, according to Israeli officials, killed 1,400 people and seized about 240 hostages in the worst attack in the country’s history.

Israel retaliated with an aerial bombing and ground offensive that the health ministry in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip says has killed more than 10,800 people, many of them children.

US President Joe Biden on Thursday welcomed the pauses, which formalise an arrangement that has already seen tens of thousands of Palestinians flee devastation in northern Gaza.

“I think some progress has been made,” Blinken said. “But I was also very clear that much more needs to be done in terms of protecting civilians and getting humanitarian assistance to them.”

Blinken said Israel’s agreed four-hour pauses, as well as two humanitarian corridors, will allow people to move away from the fighting.

“These steps will save lives and enable more assistance to get to Palestinians in need,” he added.

Blinken’s visit to India is the last stop in a marathon trip that has included South Korea, a G7 foreign ministers’ meeting in Japan — which sought to find common ground on the Israel-Hamas conflict — and a tour of the Middle East.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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