09 May 2024, 10:05

Biden says will halt artillery supplies to Israel if it attacks Rafah

WASHINGTON, May 9, 2024 (BSS/AFP) - US President Joe Biden publicly warned
Israel Wednesday he would stop supplying artillery shells and other weapons
if it attacks Rafah in southern Gaza, as he deplored the fact that civilians
had been killed by the dropping of US bombs.

"If they go into Rafah, I'm not supplying the weapons that have been used...
to deal with the cities," Biden said in a televised interview with CNN.

"We're not gonna supply the weapons and the artillery shells that have been

The threat to cut artillery supplies comes after the United States confirmed
on Tuesday that it had already paused a shipment of large bombs over concerns
about Israel's planned assault on Rafah, where more than a million
Palestinian civilians displaced by the war are sheltering near the Egyptian

"Civilians have been killed in Gaza as a consequence of those bombs and other
ways in which they (Israel) go after population centers," Biden said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to go into Rafah as part
of the campaign to eliminate Hamas after the militants' attack inside Israel
on October 7.

Israel has already defied US and international objections and sent tanks into
Rafah, seizing early Tuesday the key border crossing with Egypt.

When asked about Israel's action already in Rafah, Biden said "they haven't
gone in the population centers."

"What they did is right on the border and it's causing problems with, right
now, in terms of Egypt, which I've worked very hard to make sure we have a
relationship and help," he told CNN.

He promised Washington would "continue to make sure Israel is secure in terms
of Iron Dome and their ability to respond to attacks."

But he added that he had "made it clear to Bibi and the war cabinet --
they're not going to get our support if in fact they go in these population

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