Biden says Hamas must be eliminated but supports two-state solution

President also warned Hezbollah about staying out of deepening conflict

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Sunday 15 October 2023 19:56 EDT
Biden says Hamas must be eliminated but supports two-state solution

Joe Biden says that Hamas must be entirely eliminated but that he supports a two-state solution creating a country for the Palestinian people.

The president spoke about the escalating violence between Israel and Hamas during a Sunday night interview for 60 Minutes on CBS, and was asked by Scott Pelley if he believed Hamas should be “eliminated.”

“Yes, I do. But there needs to be a Palestinian authority. There needs to be a path to a Palestinian state,” said Mr Biden.

Pelley asked Mr Biden if he believed that Israel would support the creation of a Palestinian state in Gaza and the West Bank in the current circumstances.

“Not now. Not now. Not now, but I think Israel understands that a significant portion of Palestinian people do not share the views of Hamas and Hezbollah.”

The president was asked if he had a message for Hezbollah, Israel’s heavily armed and Iran-backed enemy to its north about entering the conflict.

“Don’t. Don’t, don’t, don’t,” he said.

Mr Biden also insisted that the US can back two wars in Israel and Ukraine at the same time as the conflict in the Middle East continues to deepen.

“We’re the United States of America for God’s sake. The most powerful nation in the history of the world,” the president told Pelley.

Joe Biden backs the elimination of Hamas and supports two-state solution

“We can take care of both of these and still maintain our overall international defence. We have the capacity to do this and we have an obligation to, we are the “essential nation” to paraphrase the former Secretary of State. And if don’t then who does?”

Mr Biden has been resolute in his support for Israel and its military action towards Hamas since the bloody attacks on the country on 7 October.

More than 1,300 people were killed in the attacks in southern Israel by Hamas fighters from Gaza, with 126 hostages kidnapped and taken back to the territory.

At least 2,670 Palestinians have been killed and 9,600 wounded since Israel launched its retaliatory attack on the Gaza Strip, the enclave’s health ministry said on Sunday.

US officials say that 14 Americans remain unaccounted for since the violence began, and Pelley asked the president what his message to the hostages was.

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