July 21, 2014
U.S. President Barack Obama told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a phone call on Sunday afternoon that the U.S. seeks “an immediate cessation of hostilities” between Israel and Hamas, based on the cease-fire agreement implemented in November 2012 after Operation Pillar of Defense.
This was the second phone call between the two leaders in three days. In Sunday’s call, Obama reiterated Washington’s support of Israel’s right to self-defense, and once again condemned attacks by Hamas against Israel.
Obama also raised “serious concern” over the growing number of Palestinian civilian casualties during the operation, as well as over the death of Israeli soldiers.
The White House said that Obama told Netanyahu the U.S. will work closely with Israel and regional partners on implementing an immediate ceasefire.”
Kerry is set to arrive in the Middle East on Monday in an effort to broker a cease-fire Kerry was slated to land in Cairo, and head for Israel on Tuesday.