Joe Biden calls for halt in Israeli military operations


US President Joe Biden has reiterated his stance that military operations should not go ahead in the Gazan city of Rafah without a credible plan for civilians.

In a speech in Washington, he said the people need to be protected and added that his country is working on a peace deal that would include a period of calm of at least six weeks.

Biden held a joint news conference with Jordan's King Abdullah to discuss the ongoing conflict. He added that bringing home the remaining hostages is still a "top priority".

"A major military operation in Rafah should not proceed without a credible plan for ensuring the safety and support of more than 1 million people sheltering there," he said.

"Many people there have been displaced multiple times fleeing the violence to the north and now they are packed into Rafah, exposed and vulnerable. They need to be protected."

Jordan's King Abdullah renewed his appeal for a broad ceasefire.

"We cannot stand by and let this continue," he said. "We need a lasting ceasefire now. This war must end."

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