January 27, 2023 16:27 GMT
US Voices Concerns On Violence In West Bank Ahead Of Blinken Visit
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White House National Security Council spox John Kirby states that the US is "aware of reports of at least 10 killed in an Israeli Defense Force counter-terrorism operation." Says that the US is "deeply concerned about recent violence in the region and condemns acts that escalate tensions." Kirby: US "believes there is urgent need for all parties to de-escalate" and that it "regrets the loss of life incurred by civilians in Israel-Palestine violence."
- The escalation in violence in the West Bank comes days ahead of a visit by US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken to the region on 30-31 Jan, where he will hold talks with officials from the Israeli gov't as well as the Palestinian Authority.
- The initial IDF raid on Jenin in the West Bank on 26 Jan has seen an escalating cycle of violence, with rockets launched by Palestinian militants in Gaza, followed by Israeli air strikes on targets in the strip.
- The hard-line right-wing nature of the new Israeli coalition gov't of PM Benjamin Netanyahu could see the IDF deployed more readily in the West Bank and limit the prospect of conciliatory talks with the Palestinian Authority.