05-1-2024, 3:22 PM

Blinken says, 'time is now' for Israel-Hamas Gaza accord

Late Tuesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated “the time is now” for a Gaza cease-fire and that Hamas must “compromise” with Israel.

He spoke at a press conference after meeting with Israeli leaders earlier in the day.

It apparently entails a 40-day ceasefire and the release of over 30 Israeli captives for many Palestinian detainees.

"We are determined to get a ceasefire that brings the hostages home and to get it now, and the only reason that that wouldn't be achieved is because of Hamas," Blinken said as he met Israeli President Isaac Herzog in Tel Aviv.

Blinken visited Israel seven times since October's battle, meeting with leaders. He wants an Israel-Hamas compromise before the Israeli force attacks Rafah, where thousands of Palestinians are hiding from the war.

Blinken reiterated the US view that Israel should not invade the overcrowded southern city of Rafah without a strategy to protect more than a million Palestinians sheltering from the fighting in severe humanitarian conditions.

"On Rafah itself - our position is clear, it has not changed, it won't change. We cannot, will not support a major military operation in Rafah absent an effective plan making sure that civilians are not harmed. We have not seen such a plan," he said.

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