Netanyahu rejects calls for opening path for Palestinian state

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday rejected calls by the United States to open a path for a Palestinian state as his nation presses on with its war against the militant group Hamas in Gaza.

Netanyahu said during a news conference Thursday that he told the U.S. he opposes any establishment of a Palestinian state in any post-war situation, The Associated Press reported. He also reiterated that Israel will continue its offensive until it clinches a “decisive victory over Hamas.”

“In any future arrangement … Israel needs security control over all territory west of the Jordan,” Netanyahu said, according to the AP. “This collides with the idea of sovereignty. What can you do?”

National security spokesperson John Kirby said Thursday that U.S. officials “obviously see it differently,” the AP reported, speaking about Netanyahu’s comments.

The U.S. has pushed for a two-state solution for the post-war scenario, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying this week that a pathway for Palestine to become its own state is “necessary” for Israel to obtain “genuine security.”

“The problem is getting from here to there, and of course, it requires very difficult, challenging decisions,” Blinken said Wednesday at the World Economic Forum, as reported by the AP. “It requires a mindset that is open to that perspective.”

State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller also said last week that Arab nations are ready to partner with the U.S. on short-term and long-term solutions for Palestinians in Gaza if Israel agrees to as well.

The Israel-Hamas war started Oct. 7 when Hamas militants killed about 1,200 people and took another 240 hostage. Since then, the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry has said Israel has killed more than 24,000 people in counterattacks.

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