Netanyahu making a ‘mistake’ in handling Gaza, says Biden

WASHINGTON, April 10 : US President Joe Biden, who has been facing stiff resistance at home over his Israel stance, has now said he believes that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is making a “mistake” in his handling of Gaza. “I think what he’s doing is a mistake. I don’t agree with his approach,” Biden said during a hour-long interview that was aired Tuesday night on US Spanish-language network Univision. Biden said it was “outrageous” how the aid organisation’s vehicles had been “hit by drones and taken out on a highway”.

The conversation was recorded last Wednesday — days after Israeli military strikes killed seven aid workers with World Central Kitchen, as per a BBC report. Biden is facing domestic pressure over Israel and over the past weeks he has sharpened his rhetoric over Israel’s conduct in the six-month-old war, including towards Netanyahu.

He said Gaza should have “total access to all food and medicine” for the next six to eight weeks. Last week he warned ongoing US support for the war depended on Israel allowing in more food and medicine. In the interview Biden said: “What I’m calling for is for the Israelis to just call for a ceasefire, allow for the next six, eight weeks, total access to all food and medicine going into the country.

“Israel has denied impeding the entry of aid or its distribution inside Gaza, and has accused UN agencies on the ground of failing to get the aid that is allowed in to the people who need it. Weeks of talks have failed to produce a ceasefire agreement but international pressure is growing. The Israel Defense Forces have since said “grave mistakes” led to the fatal targeting of the workers. An inquiry led to two senior officers being dismissed. The US president has previously said Hamas must agree to a pause and release remaining hostages. (UNI)