Live blog: Jordan cancels summit with Biden after Israel bombs Gaza hospital

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Jordan has cancelled the summit with US President Joe Biden and leaders of Egypt and Palestine, saying “there is no use in talking now about anything except stopping the war.”

The summit will be held “when the decision to stop the war and put an end to these massacres has been taken,” said Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi.

Amman cancelled the summit after Israel bombed a hospital in besieged Gaza, killing at least 500 Palestinians and wounding countless others.

0208 GMT — US raises travel advisory for Lebanon to ‘do not travel’

The US State Department has raised its travel alert for Lebanon to “do not travel,” citing the security situation related to rocket, missile, and artillery exchanges between Israel and Hezbollah.

The State Department authorised the voluntary, temporary departure of family members of US government personnel and some non-emergency personnel from the US Embassy in Beirut because of the unpredictable security situation in Lebanon.

0052 GMT — Israeli embassy in Brazil protests comments by Lula’s party

The Israeli embassy in Brazil has protested against a resolution by the party of leftist President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva that accuses Israel of “genocide” and “war crimes.”

“It is very unfortunate that a party that defends human rights compares the terrorist organisation Hamas, which goes from house to house to murder entire families, with what the Israeli government is doing to protect its citizens,” the embassy in Brasilia posted on X, formerly Twitter.

“There must be a strong separation between the Hamas terrorist organisation and the Palestinians,” the embassy added, in response to a resolution published on Monday by the Lula’s Workers Party, or PT.

2330 GMT — Palestinian resistance group rejects Israeli accusation

Palestinian resistance group Islamic Jihad has described as “lies” the Israel army’s accusations that it was responsible for strike on Gaza hospital.

“The Zionist enemy is trying hard to evade its responsibility for the brutal massacre he committed by bombing the Baptist Arab National Hospital in Gaza through his usual fabrication of lies, and through pointing the finger of blame at the Islamic Jihad movement in Palestine,” it said in a statement.

“We therefore affirm that the accusations put forward by the enemy are false and baseless,” it added.

2300 GMT — Biden speaks to Israel’s PM, Jordan’s king after Gaza hospital attack

US President Joe Biden has spoken with King Abdullah of Jordan, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel after Israel’s hospital attack in besieged Gaza left hundreds dead.

Biden was also briefed on the attack by his national security team and spoke over the phone with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the White House added.

2255 GMT — Hundreds of protesters outside French, UK embassies in Tehran

Hundreds of protesters have gathered outside the British and French embassies in Tehran, an AFP news agency correspondent said, as regional anger grows over Israel’s deadly strike on a Gaza hospital.

“Death to France and England,” protesters shouted, throwing eggs at the walls of the French embassy compound in the Iranian capital.

2200 GMT — Biden postpones Jordan visit following Gaza blast

US President Joe Biden has postponed his visit to Jordan after Israel’s deadly strike on Al Ahli hospital in Gaza and will only go to Israel on his Middle East trip, the White House said.

Biden decided after “consulting” with Jordan’s King Abdullah II and “in light of the days of mourning” announced by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who was due at the summit along with Egypt’s president, the White House said in a statement.

2139 GMT — Palestinian UN envoy blames Israel for Gaza hospital strike

Palestinian United Nations Ambassador Riyad Mansour, standing with Arab UN envoys, said they were all outraged by a deadly strike on Al Ahli hospital and blamed Israel, which says a Palestinian militant group was responsible.

“We condemn this act in the strongest possible terms, and we hold Israel responsible for this massacre, this crime, and those responsible for this crime should face justice,” Mansour told reporters at the United Nations.



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