US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday deleted a social media post in which he encouraged a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in their current conflict.
The post was related to a phone call Blinken held with his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan about what it called "terrorist attacks on Israel," referring to the Hamas operation against Israel.
"I encouraged Türkiye's advocacy for a cease-fire and the release of all hostages held by Hamas immediately," Blinken Sunday posted on X before deleting it early Monday.
State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said in the readout of the phone call that Blinken and Fidan "discussed developments related to the Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel."
"The Secretary encouraged Türkiye’s continued engagement and highlighted the United States’ unwavering focus on halting the attacks by Hamas and securing the release of all hostages," Miller said in the statement released shortly after the phone call on Sunday.
The US Office of Palestinian Affairs, a section of the US Embassy in Jerusalem, also deleted an X post on Saturday in which they had urged "all sides to refrain from violence and retaliatory attacks."
The Gaza-based resistance group Hamas launched Operation Al-Aqsa Flood against Israel early Saturday, firing a barrage of rockets. It said the surprise attack was in response to the storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem and growing settler violence.
In retaliation, the Israeli army launched Operation Swords of Iron against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
The number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in Gaza has risen to 560, the Gaza-based Health Ministry said on Monday amid ongoing fighting. It also said the number of injured people surged to 2,900.
The Interior Ministry in Gaza said the Israeli army has "intensified its aggression" on Gaza with hundreds of raids.
The Israeli army said it had struck over 500 targets in overnight raids on Gaza, which they claimed were targets belonging to the Hamas and Islamic Jihad groups.
At least 900 Israelis have been killed and over 2,616 others wounded in the fighting, according to local media.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.