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President Joe Biden outlined his vision for the governance of Gaza and the West Bank in the aftermath of the Israel-Hamas conflict, advocating for the Palestinian Authority’s leadership.
In an opinion piece in the Washington Post, Biden emphasized, “As we strive for peace, Gaza and the West Bank should be reunited under a single governance structure, ultimately under a revitalized Palestinian Authority, as we all work toward a two-state solution.” He firmly stated that there must be no forcible displacement of Palestinians from Gaza, no reoccupation, siege, blockade, or reduction in territory.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed skepticism about Biden’s proposal, doubting the Palestinian Authority’s capability to assume responsibility for Gaza. “I think that the PA in its current form is not capable of accepting the responsibility for Gaza after we’ve fought and done all this, to pass it to them,” Netanyahu said during a press conference in Tel Aviv. The Palestinian Authority, which previously governed both the West Bank and Gaza, lost control of Gaza to Hamas in 2007.
In addition to addressing governance, Biden also mentioned the US preparedness to impose visa bans on extremists attacking civilians in the West Bank. He stressed the need to stop extremist violence against Palestinians and hold perpetrators accountable.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas also urged Biden to intervene and stop attacks against Palestinians by Israeli forces and settlers.
The West Bank, home to a large Palestinian population living alongside Jewish settlers, has experienced heightened tensions and violence since the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel.