Biden administration stresses need for ‘equal’ peace between Israel and Palestinians


Secretary of State Antony Blinken underscored the Biden administration’s emphasis on “equal peace” between Israel and the Palestinian people after the most recent bloody conflict in the region.

The two countries agreed to an unconditional ceasefire after 11 days of fighting that led to intense international scrutiny and criticism of Israel’s response.

Critics – both foreign and domestic – have asked President Biden about his position after he reiterated his full support for Israel, but Blinken insists the administration wants to ensure equal peace between Israel and the Palestinians .

FILE - In this file photo from February 4, 2021, Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at the State Department in Washington.  The Biden administration's early efforts to resuscitate the 2015 Iran nuclear deal prompted an early reaction from Tehran.  While few expected a breakthrough in the new administration's first month, Iran's hard line suggests a tough road ahead (AP Photo / Evan Vucci, File)

FILE – In this file photo from February 4, 2021, Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at the State Department in Washington. The Biden administration’s early efforts to resuscitate the 2015 Iran nuclear deal prompted an early reaction from Tehran. While few expected a breakthrough in the new administration’s first month, Iran’s hard line suggests a tough road ahead (AP Photo / Evan Vucci, File)
(AP)

“It is vitally important that Palestinians feel hope and have opportunities and can live in security as Israelis do,” Blinken told George Stephanopoulos. “And there should be equal measures.”

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“The president has made it clear that he remains committed to a two-state solution,” Blinken added. “Ultimately, this is the only way to secure Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state, and of course, the only way to give the Palestinians the state to which they are entitled.”

Blinken said that a big part of this process would be to make the Palestinian people feel “equal measures of security, peace and dignity”.

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However, progressive members of the Democratic Party have strongly opposed any support for Israel: Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Introduced a resolution on Thursday to force a vote on whether to block arms sales to Israel.

House Democrats, including Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, DN.Y., Mark Pocan, D-Wis., And Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., Tabled a similar resolution on Wednesday.

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Rather, Blinken praised the president’s response and “the relentless emphasis on … quiet but effective diplomacy” to secure a ceasefire.

“If you go back and look at the previous crises, they lasted a lot longer,” Blinken said. “But, of course, every day that these things happen, we see a tremendous loss in human life and suffering. And we were determined to put an end to it.”

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He also said Biden would consult Congress on “any” arms sales, although the administration remains committed to “giving Israel the means to defend itself.”

Fox News’ Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.

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