Welcoming the unconditional ceasefire between Israel-Hamas, US President Joe Biden on Friday, said that he had spoken to both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Egyptians who are in touch with Hamas. He lamented the deaths of the hundreds of civilians due to the 11-day war, condoling all families - Israeli and Palestinian hoping for a recovery. Vowing to continue US diplomacy with Israel and Palestine, he said that both equally deserve to live in safety and security and enjoy freedom.
Prime Minister Netanyahu informed me that Israel has agreed to a mutual, unconditional ceasefire. The Egyptians have now informed us that Hamas and the other groups in Gaza have also agreed.— President Biden (@POTUS) May 20, 2021
Meanwhile, US Secretary of state Anthony Blinken spoke with his counterparts in Israel and Palestine and will be traveling to the region in the coming days to hold talks with both parties. The president of the UN General Assembly Volkan Bozkir too welcomed the impending cease-fire in the fighting between Israel and Hamas calling it "overdue" and "reassuring". Bozkir spoke shortly after Israel and Hamas announced a cease-fire which went into effect at 2 AM Friday, ending an 11-day war. As of date, atleast 232 people have died in Gaza as a result of the Israeli bombing including 65 children and 12 in Israel
On early Friday morning, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Security Cabinet approved a unilateral ceasefire to halt an 11-day military operation in the Gaza Strip, according to AP. Shortly after this, Hamas confirmed via a spokesperson that it too would enter into a ceasefire and truce. Recently, Israel had lashed out at Hamas at the UNGA, equating it to ISIS and accusing a number of nations of 'demonised Israel' of anti-semitism disguised as anti-Zionism.
The tensions began in east Jerusalem earlier this month, when Palestinians protested attempts by settlers to forcibly evict a number of Palestinian families from their homes and Israeli police measures at Al-Aqsa Mosque, a frequent flashpoint located on a mount in the Old City revered by Muslims and Jews. Hamas fired rockets toward Jerusalem late Monday, triggering the Israeli assault on Gaza. Since then, Hamas has fired more than 4,000 rockets, though most have either fallen short or been intercepted by anti-missile defenses. Israel's warplanes and artillery have struck hundreds of targets around blockaded Gaza, where some 2 million Palestinians live. On Saturday, the 12-story al-Jalaa Building, where the offices of the AP, the TV network Al-Jazeera and other media outlets are located was razed to the ground by an Israeli rocket strike citing 'Hamas operation inside the building'. With Israel being shielded by its Iron Dome - the Israeli air defence system which chases Hamas' short-range rockets, its fatalities have remained at 12, including one Indian - Soumya Santhosh - a Kerala caretaker.