Netanyahu rejects Biden’s plea for Gaza cease-fire
Israel has carried out hundreds of airstrikes in Gaza, and the Islamic militant group Hamas has fired more than 3,700 rockets at Israeli cities since May 10. On Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the phone that he expected a significant de-escalation on the path to a cease-fire. But Netanyahu said he has no intention of backing down.
How did the fighting start? Earlier in the month, tension between Israelis and Palestinians escalated because of a court battle over ownership of a housing block in East Jerusalem just outside the walls of the Old City. At the same time, Israeli police in East Jerusalem set up barriers to block nightly gatherings of Arab Muslims during Ramadan. Protests and confrontations turned to riots, and Hamas started launching rockets on May 10.
Dig deeper: Listen to Mary Reichard discuss the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with expert Jonathan Schanzer on The World and Everything in It podcast.
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