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Antony Blinken’s Surprise Visit to West Bank for Meeting with Palestinian President

US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, made an unannounced visit to the Israeli-occupied West Bank, where he met with Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas. The visit took place amid escalating violence in the West Bank and the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict that started on October 7.

The war in Gaza erupted after Hamas operatives launched an attack on southern Israel, resulting in the loss of 1,400 lives, predominantly civilians, according to Israeli reports.

Blinken has visited Israel three times since the beginning of the conflict and also traveled to various Arab nations. However, this visit marked his first trip to the West Bank since October 7. The visit was not pre-announced due to security concerns and followed Blinken’s meetings in Jordan and Israel on the previous Friday.

During his visit to Jordan, Blinken expressed concern about the increasing violence in the West Bank and emphasized the US commitment to working with partners towards achieving lasting peace in the region.

The West Bank has witnessed over 150 Palestinian casualties in clashes with Israeli forces and attacks by Israeli settlers since the conflict began, according to the Palestinian Authority based in Ramallah.

Blinken’s meeting with President Abbas, a rival to Hamas from the Fatah party, occurred while the United States has been strongly supporting Israel, both politically and militarily.

The United States, along with several European and Arab nations and the United Nations, has expressed alarm at the escalating tensions in the West Bank.

The Israeli military stated that its forces were “operating against Hamas” in locations like Jenin and Nablus, in the northern region of the territory that has been under Israeli occupation since 1967.

During his Middle East tour, Blinken advocated for “humanitarian pauses” to protect civilians and facilitate aid deliveries in the densely populated Gaza Strip, which has been under intense bombardment.

Blinken is scheduled to travel to Ankara, Turkey, on Sunday evening.

For more updates stay tuned to FELA News!

Source: NDTV

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