Biden Administration Officials Express Concern Over Mounting Violence

By Zalman Ahnsaf

U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/Pool via Reuters/File Photo)

YERUSHALAYIM — The Biden administration issued multiple statements of concern over the rise of violence in Yehuda and Shomron in recent months.

State Department spokesman Ned Price led off his daily press briefing on Wednesday saying that the U.S. is “deeply concerned” that more than 100 Palestinians were killed in the territory since the start of the year, 30 in Gaza, and over 20 Israelis and other civilians killed in Palestinian terror attacks on both sides of the Green Line.

“We call on all parties to do everything in their power to de-escalate the situation and return to a period of calm. This is in the interest of all Israelis and Palestinians. As we have said for some time, we call on the parties themselves to contain the violence,” Price continued. “The United States and other international partners stand ready to help but we cannot substitute for vital actions by the parties to mitigate conflict and to restore calm.”

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the Security Council’s monthly session on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that “we are troubled by the overall trend of growing violence,” and criticized unilateral actions taken by both sides that she said have exacerbated tensions.

“This includes terrorist attacks and incitement to violence against Israelis. This includes plans to develop Har Gilo west, which would further fragment the West Bank – and possible demolitions in Masafer Yatta. And this includes violence inflicted by Israeli settlers on Palestinians in their neighborhoods, and in some cases escorted by Israeli security forces,” she said.

The same note was struck on Wednesday by U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan during his meeting with his visiting Israeli counterpart Eyal Hulata. Sullivan “stressed the need to take steps to de-escalate tensions in the West Bank, and to continue to take steps to improve the lives of Palestinians,” the White House readout said.

Sullivan also commended progress on expanded access for Palestinians at Allenby Crossing between into Jordan, which Israel announced on Wednesday would begin operating 24/7 late next month.

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