Blinken heads to Israel to promote peace
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Jerusalem on Monday amid heightened tensions between Palestinians and Israel. Last week, Israeli soldiers killed nine Palestinians in a bloody shootout in the West Bank. A day later, a gunman in Jerusalem killed seven people outside a synagogue before losing his life to police. Then on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a crackdown on Palestinians in the West Bank.
What will Blinken do? U.S. officials say he will hammer the theme of “de-escalation” in discussions with Netanyahu and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. The United States has expressed opposition to Netanyahu’s previous promises to strengthen settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. They have also condemned the Palestinian Authority for suspending security cooperation with Israel following the shootout in the West Bank.
Dig deeper: Read Mindy Belz’s report in WORLD Magazine about heightened tensions in the Middle East in 2021.
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