Biden says he prays ceasefire between Israel and Hamas holds

US President Joe Biden speaks during a joint news conference with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, in the East Room of the White House, Friday, May 21, 2021, in Washington. (AP)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — U.S. President Joe Biden said on Friday he was praying that the ceasefire between Israelis and Hamas would hold as he repeated the Democratic Party’s support for Israel. 

Biden said at White House press conference that a two-state solution was the only answer to resolving the conflict between the two sides, according to Reuters.

Biden, whose administration worked behind the scenes for days to reach a truce, also pledged to build a major package with other countries to hold rebuild Gaza.

He further said aid to the region would be coordinated with the Palestinian Authority to ensure Hamas was not able to restock its military arsenal.

On Friday, Israel and Hamas ended 11 days of fighting that killed 248 people and wounded 1,900. Reuters cited humanitarian officials as saying the damage to Gaza will take years to rebuild at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.

The U.S. president called for an end to inter-communal fighting by extremists on both sides, saying it was imperative to ensure security for Palestinians in the West Bank and help the people of Gaza.

Biden further said he would also insist that Israeli citizens – both Arabs and Jews – must be treated equally, Reuters said.

“Let’s get something straight here: until the region says unequivocally they acknowledge the right of Israel to exist as an independent Jewish state, there will be no peace,” Biden told reporters at a joint news conference with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

“I’m praying this ceasefire will hold. I take Bibi Netanyahu – when he gives me his word – I take him at his word. He’s never broken his word to me,” Biden said.

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