No Ceasefire In Israel-Hamas War Until Hostages Are Released, Biden Vows


LAGOS OCTOBER 24TH(NEWSRANGERS)-President Joe Biden said Monday he would not consider backing a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war until all hostages kidnapped by Hamas are released.

“We should have those hostages released and then we can talk,” Biden told reporters when asked about the potential for a ceasefire in exchange for Hamas releasing approximately 200 hostages, including Americans, believed to be in the Gaza Strip.

Some liberal Democrats in Congress have urged Biden – who has stood in complete solidarity with Israel since Hamas attacked the U.S. ally Oct. 7 – to facilitate a cease-fire agreement amid rising casualties among Palestinians in Gaza and warfare that has complicated the delivery of humanitarian resources.

State Department spokesman Matthew Miller seemed to reject the idea of a ceasefire early Monday, arguing it would hurt Israel’s ability to defend itself amid continued terrorist threats.

“Any ceasefire would give Hamas the ability to rest, to refit, and to get ready to continue launching terrorist attacks against Israel,” Miller said. “You can understand perfectly clearly why that’s an intolerable situation for Israel, as it would be an intolerable situation for any country that has suffered such a brutal terrorist attack.”

Hamas released two additional hostages, both Israeli women, on Monday after releasing two Americans, a mother and daughter, on Friday.

Biden said he planned to go to the White House Situation Room regarding the Middle East Conflict but did not elaborate further.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon has ordered additional troops to the Middle East as the Biden administration seeks to stop Iran and Hezbollah from widening the Israel-Hamas war.

John Kirby, a White House spokesman on national security matters, said the U.S. “has added additional military forces to the region and more forces will be coming in days and weeks ahead, to try to deter any action from widening or deepening this conflict.”

The moves come after Kirby said the U.S. has identified an “uptick” in rocket and drone attacks by Iranian-backed proxy groups against military bases housing US personnel in Iraq and Syria.

Kirby declined to specify what the additional military presence would like. The Pentagon has already distant two carrier strike group to the region.

“We’re deeply concerned about the potential for any significant escalation of these attacks,” Kirby said, adding that Biden has ordered Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to take steps to ensure the U.S. is “postured appropriately.”

Kirby said the U.S. knows Iran is “closely monitoring” these events “and in some cases, actively facilitating these attacks” and spurring others who want to exploit the conflict for their “own good.”

“We know Iran’s goal is to maintain some level of deniability here. We’re not going to allow them to do that,” he said.

Reach Joey Garrison on X, formerly known as Twitter, @joeygarrison.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY:

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