Biden vows to help 'rebuild' Gaza, prays ceasefire will last

Biden vows to help 'rebuild' Gaza, prays ceasefire will last
2 min read
22 May, 2021
Speaking at the White House alongside South Korean President Moon Jae-in, President Biden pledged to help organise efforts to rebuild Gaza and said that he was praying that the truce between Israel and Hamas would last.
Biden also said he called on Israel to stop 'intercommunal fighting' in Jerusalem [Getty]

US President Joe Biden on Friday pledged to help organise efforts to rebuild Gaza and said that he was praying the truce between Israel and Hamas would last, Reuters have reported.

The two sides agreed to end fighting on Friday, after 248 Palestinians died during Israel's 11-day bombardment of the besieged territory. Humanitarian officials say it will take years to rebuild Gaza and cost tens of millions of dollars. 

Biden also said he called on Israel to stop "intercommunal fighting" in Jerusalem and that Washington was "insisting" that Jewish and Palestinian Israelis must be treated equally.

He stressed that this was key to ensuring security for Palestinian in the West Bank and to help Palestinian in Gaza.

The leader’s remarks came during a joint press conference at the White House alongside South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

Facing calls from progressive lawmakers within his party to halt military sales to Israel, Biden claimed that creating a Palestinian state alongside the Jewish state was the "only answer" to the conflict.

The idea of a two-state solution - with a sovereign Palestinian state alongside Israel and Jerusalem as their shared capital - has been the cornerstone of decades of international diplomacy aimed at ending the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Read also: Democrats are changing their minds about Israel. But can Biden be pushed to take a tougher stance?

US policy Donald Trump was criticised as being blatantly pro-Israel and ignoring the Palestinians.

A Mideast peace plan devised by Trump's adviser and son in law Jared Kushner was billed as providing for a two-state solution. But that blueprint envisioned a Palestinian state with only limited sovereignty and Israel maintaining security over that state.

The plan was rejected out of hand by Palestinian leaders.

Biden on Friday insisted on a full-blown two state remedy.

"There is no shift in my commitment to the security of Israel, period, no shift, not at all," he said   "But I tell you what there is a shift in. The shift is that we still need a two-state solution. It is the only answer, the only answer," Biden stated.