President Biden expressed his condolences and solidarity with Israel during his visit to the country on Wednesday.
While in Israel, he addressed the recent hospital explosion in Gaza City, which Hamas attributed to Israel, although Israel has vehemently denied involvement.
“I’m deeply saddened and outraged by the explosion at the hospital in Gaza yesterday, and based on what I’ve seen, it appears as though it was done by the other team, not you,” President Biden said to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a press conference.
The President added, “But there’s a lot of people out there who are not sure. So — we’ve got to overcome a lot of things.”
When asked about the basis of his confidence that Israel was not responsible for the hospital strike, President Biden mentioned information provided by the U.S. Defense Department.
“I come to Israel with a single message — you’re not alone,” President Biden emphasized, highlighting the enduring support of the United States for Israel. He paid his respects to the victims and their families, stating, “You don’t have to be a Jew to be a Zionist.”
Biden was scheduled to visit Jordan next to visit with Arab leaders, butafter Jordan’s foreign minister said the summit was canceled.
President Biden also touched on the issue of Americans missing in the conflict, potentially held by Hamas.
Seated next to Prime Minister Netanyahu, the President reassured Israel of the United States’ commitment to its defense. He also made a distinction between Hamas and the Palestinian people, describing Hamas’s actions as atrocities “that make ISIS look somewhat more rational.”
While praising the heroism of the Israeli people, President Biden stated, “I’m proud to be here.” He is expected to make further remarks as his visit continues.