(August 7, 2022 / JNS) A ceasefire between Israel and the Gaza Strip-based Palestinian Islamic Jihad appears to be holding since it came into effect at 11.30pm on Sunday.
The deal, brokered by Egypt and Qatar, was praised on Sunday by US President Joe Biden for halting nearly three days of conflict.
In a statement, Biden affirmed his support for Israel’s right to self-defense and praised the Iron Dome missile defense system.
“My support for Israel’s security is long-standing and unwavering, including its right to defend itself from attack,” the statement said. “[T]The United States is proud of our support of Israel’s Iron Dome, which intercepted hundreds of rockets and saved countless lives.”
Biden also expressed concern about civilian casualties in Gaza from Israeli airstrikes and PIJ rockets falling inside Gaza and called for an investigation into these reports.
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“The reports of civilian casualties in Gaza are a tragedy, whether from Israeli strikes against Islamic Jihad positions or the dozens of Islamic Jihad rockets that reportedly landed inside Gaza,” Biden said. “My administration supports a timely and thorough investigation of all these reports.”
“Israelis and Palestinians deserve to live in security and enjoy the same measure of freedom, prosperity and democracy,” he added. “My administration will remain engaged with Israeli and Palestinian leaders to support this vision and implement the initiatives launched during my visit to improve the quality of life for Palestinians and Israelis alike.”
Biden also praised Prime Minister Yair Lapid and his government for their “steady leadership throughout the crisis.”
Before implementing the ceasefire, Lapid’s office stressed out that if it is violated, “Israel maintains the right to respond firmly. We will not allow any disruption to the lives of the citizens of the State of Israel.”
Since the start of “Operation Breaking Dawn”, more than 1,000 missiles have been fired at the Jewish State from Gaza, with 97% intercepted and more than 120 landing in Gaza. seconds the IDF