Joe Biden with Jordanian King Abdullah II
Jordan’s King Abdullah II met with US President Joe Biden at the White House on Monday to discuss ending the Israel-Hamas war, as fears grow of an onslaught in Gaza’s southern city of Rafah.
Amman is a key player in the area, and the king is also visiting Canada, France, and Germany, as international pressure builds for a cease-fire in Gaza and the release of captives.
Ahead of the meeting, a senior Biden administration official stated, “They will discuss efforts to produce an enduring end to the crisis”.
“A deal requires as a precondition the return of hostages held by Hamas, and then of course, looking ahead at durable long-term peace requires a formula for two states with Israel’s security guaranteed”, the
The US president and First Lady Jill Biden welcomed the Jordanian king and Queen Rania to the White House at 2:30 pm (1930 GMT), followed by remarks at 4:00 pm.
The visit comes after weeks of talks between the US and regional powers failed to reach a ceasefire and hostage release agreement between Israel and Hamas.
The two leaders discussed a possible hostage release deal in the Israel-Hamas war and criticized Israel’s planned ground attacks on the Rafah
Speaking at the White House, both leaders cautioned against any indiscriminate Israeli ground incursion into Rafah, where over a million Palestinians are trapped.
The US President said, “We don’t know how many are still alive. The anguish that their families are enduring, week after week, month after month is unimaginable. And it’s a top priority for the United States to bring them home”.
Taking the lectern after Biden, the Jordanian king stated, “We cannot afford an Israeli attack on Rafah. It is certain to produce another humanitarian catastrophe”.
The Jordanian king went on to say, “We cannot stand by and let this continue. We need a lasting ceasefire now — this war must end”. He has repeatedly pushed for a full truce to end the war that began on October 7 when Hamas attacked Israel.
The United States has infuriated several Middle East allies by consistently refusing to call for a full ceasefire, with Washington arguing that it supports Israel’s drive to destroy Hamas and asking for shorter pauses with hostage deals instead.