Thursday, President Joe Biden is expected to make an important announcement regarding Washington’s latest stance on the two major wars being fought in Ukraine and in the Middle East.
“President Biden will address the nation to discuss our response to Hamas’ terrorist attacks against Israel and Russia’s ongoing brutal war against Ukraine,” reads a statement by the White House.
The President is scheduled to speak from the Oval Office at 8 PM ET.
He is addressing the nation hours after returning from the Middle East.
During his seven hour stay in the Israeli war zone, Biden pledged steadfast support to its strongest ally in the Middle East.
Biden’s high-profile visit was over shadowed by a deadly attack on a Hospital in northern Gaza.
Israel and the Palestinians blamed each other for hundreds of fatalities and injuries caused by a rocket explosion in Al Ahli Arab Hospital Tuesday night.
In his meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Biden expressed doubt that the attack originated from Gaza itself.
The only breakthrough achieved by Biden’s visit was a deal that the United States reached with Egypt and Israel to allow the badly needed humanitarian aid through the Rafah crossing.
Talking to reporters on his way back at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Biden said the Rafah border crossing will open possibly on Friday.
Biden said that during his phone call with Egyptian President El-Sisi, his counterpart agreed that up to 20 trucks will be allowed initially to go through to Gaza.
Food, water and medicines will be allowed in, but not fuel, reports said.
“But here’s the deal: up to 20 trucks. This has been a very blunt negotiation I’ve had. And so, we want to get as many of the trucks out as possible. There’s, I guess, 150 or something there. Not all of them will go the first tranche. If there’s a second tranche — see how it goes.”
Biden warned that if Hamas confiscates it or doesn’t let it get through, “then it’s going to end, because we’re not going to be sending any humanitarian aid to Hamas”.
He added that Ambassador David Satterfield, the U.S. Special Envoy for Middle East Humanitarian Issues, is in Cairo now, and he is going to coordinate this.
Thousands of Palestinians are waiting at the Rafah border crossing to flee Gaza ahead of the Israeli ground offensive.
Dozens of UN aid cargo are held up at the only possible corridor to enter the besieged Gaza Strip.
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