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Biden ‘expresses support’ for ceasefire in call with Netanyahu — White House

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US correspondent based in New York

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, meets with then US vice president Joe Biden at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem, on March 9, 2016. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, meets with then US vice president Joe Biden at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem, on March 9, 2016. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)

US President Joe Biden “expressed his support for a ceasefire” between Israel and Hamas during a phone call with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu earlier this evening, the White House says.

It was the third call the two leaders have had since the violence in Gaza erupted.

Biden “reiterated his firm support for Israel’s right to defend itself against indiscriminate rocket attacks,” according to the US readout.

The two leaders discussed progress in Israel’s military operations against Hamas and other terror groups in Gaza.

Biden encouraged Israel to “make every effort to ensure the protection of innocent civilians,” the readout says.

The president updated Netanyahu on US engagement with Egypt and other partners to broker a ceasefire.

He also welcomed the Israeli government’s ‘efforts to address inter-communal violence and to bring calm to Jerusalem,” the White House said.

The two leaders agreed that they and their teams would remain in close touch.

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