After meeting with PM ends, Washington says Blinken reiterated US position on Rafah op

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (center left) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (center right) hold a meeting with their respective teams in Jerusalem, May 1, 2024. (Omer Meron/GPO)
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (center left) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (center right) hold a meeting with their respective teams in Jerusalem, May 1, 2024. (Omer Meron/GPO)

The expanded meeting between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and their respective aides concludes in Jerusalem, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Video of the one-on-one meeting released by Israel shows a seemingly relaxed and smiling Netanyahu next to a more severe-looking Blinken. But later, a silent video from the larger meeting shows Netanyahu and Blinken swapping light-hearted statements that garner smiles around the table.

Blinken “reiterated the United States’ clear position on Rafah,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said, two days after the top diplomat again voiced opposition to an assault over concerns for the safety of civilians sheltering in the southern Gaza city.

Blinken is due to meet Defense Minister Yoav Gallant at the Kerem Shalom crossing next.

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