The State Department of the United States has voiced its opinion on the recent conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. The department believes that a transition period towards peace is necessary in the aftermath of the war.
Over the course of 11 days, Israeli warplanes struck Hamas’s targets in Gaza killing at least 248 Palestinians, including 66 children, and 12 people in Israel, including two children. The bloodshed appears to have come to an end after a United Nations- and Egyptian-brokered agreement was finalized between the two sides.
The State Department said in a statement released Wednesday that the U.S. is “deeply concerned about the loss of life and the suffering endured by innocent people in the Gaza Strip,” adding that it strongly condemns “the firing of rockets into Israel by Hamas and other terror groups in Gaza.”
The statement also noted the importance of a transition period towards peace. It said that “peace cannot be established until there is a sustainable resolution to the underlying issues that have been fueling violence in the region for too long,” and that this resolution must include a “complete cessation of hostilities and the lifting of the siege on Gaza.”
The department further said that “it is critical that Israel fulfills its commitments under the agreement and lifts the restrictions it has imposed on Gaza.” It added that the U.S. supports international efforts to advance “closer economic integration and security measures between Israel and the Palestinian people, as well as support for humanitarian assistance and development in Gaza.”
The State Department’s statement echoed remarks made by Secretary of State Antony Blinken earlier this week, in which he declared the U.S.’s commitment to helping the region move “toward a just, secure, and lasting peace that ends the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.”
While war appears to have temporarily ceased, it is clear that a period of transition is necessary to bring an end to the conflict and promote sustained peace to the region. The State Department’s statement emphasizes the importance of this period and the need for Israel and the Palestinians to work together in order for it to succeed.