State Secretary of the United States, Antony Blinken, has called on Israel to take “urgent” measures to stop the violence perpetrated by Jewish settlers against Palestinians in the West Bank.
Blinken, who is in San Francisco attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, conveyed this message during a phone conversation with Benny Gantz, the opposition leader who has become a member of the security cabinet under Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
“Blinken emphasized the urgent need for positive steps to de-escalate tensions in the West Bank, including addressing the rising levels of violence by extremist settlers,” said Matthew Miller, a spokesperson for the U.S. State Department.
Blinken and Gantz discussed efforts to increase and expedite the transit of critical humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip.
The politicians also talked about ongoing diplomatic efforts to secure the release of hostages taken by Hamas during the large-scale attack on Israel from the Gaza Strip on October 7.