White House confirms Biden summit in Amman canceled

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US bureau chief

The White House confirms that the Jordan portion of US President Joe Biden’s trip to the Mideast has been cancelled.

He was supposed to hold a summit in Amman with the leaders of Jordan, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority, but Jordan announced that it was scrapping the meeting following the bombing of a Gaza City hospital that killed hundreds.

Israel says an errant Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket was responsible for the blast but much of the Arab world had blamed the IDF.

A White House official says in a statement that the decision to scrap the Amman summit was made after Biden consulted with Jordan’s King Abdullah “and in light of the days of mourning announced by” Abbas following the hospital blast.

Biden sent Abdullah “his deepest condolences for the innocent lives lost in the hospital explosion in Gaza, and wished a speedy recovery to the wounded,” the White House official says, being careful not to place blame on a particular party as the US works to determine who was responsible.

“Biden looks forward to consulting in person with these leaders soon, and agreed to remain regularly and directly engaged with each of them over the coming days,” the White House official adds.

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