Israel ‘strengthening effort against Rafah’ after talks with Jake Sullivan

Israel is “strengthening our effort against Rafah” following a new round of consultations with U.S. officials intended to bridge a rift over the military operation that opened in recent months.

“This operation will go on and increase, more forces on the ground, more forces from the air, and we will reach our goals: to deal a very hard blow to Hamas, to deprive it of its military capabilities, [and] to create the conditions to return the hostages to their homes,” Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said Thursday.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s determination to attack Hamas in Rafah developed in recent months into a bone of contention within Israeli society and between his government and President Joe Biden’s administration. Netanyahu has rebuffed pressure to accept Hamas’s demand for a permanent
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