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Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the phone to US President Joe Biden

Joe Biden reportedly warned Benjamin Netanyahu that the US will not participate in any Israeli counter-attacks against Iran.

The US president and his senior advisers are highly concerned that an Israeli response to Iran’s attack would lead to a regional war with catastrophic consequences, US officials told Axios.

On Saturday evening, Iran launched its first-ever direct attack on Israel, involving more than 300 drones and missiles. The attack came in retaliation to an airstrike in Syria on April 1 that killed seven of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps – Israel has neither confirmed nor denied responsibility.

Mr Biden said the US and Israel had shot down “nearly all” of the drones and missiles launched by Tehran overnight, aided also by Britain, France and Jordan. Israel said 99 per cent were intercepted without hitting their targets and that “very little damage” had been caused.

President Joe Biden Meets With National Security Council Regarding Missile Attacks On Israel
President Biden meets with national security council regarding missile attacks on Israel - Adam Schultz - White House via CNP 

American forces intercepted 70 drones and at least three ballistic missiles, according to CNN, while Mr Biden also said that US support for Israel was “ironclad”.

“You got a win. Take the win,” Mr Biden reportedly told Mr Netanyahu, adding that the US will not participate in any offensive operations. Mr Netanyahu reportedly said that he understands the US’s position.

Iran has said the attacks “achieved all its objectives” and that it is not planning any further operations. It warned Israel against taking any “reckless” actions, and said it would not hesitate to retaliate with a “much stronger response”.

However, Israel has said the “campaign is not over yet”.

Lloyd Austin, the US secretary of defence, has asked that Israel notify the US ahead of any response against Iran.

World leaders have condemned Iran’s attack, with regional powers Saudi Arabia and Egypt calling for restraint. Leaders from the G7 will hold a video conference later on Sunday to discuss the Iranian strikes and coordinate a united diplomatic response. By Harriet Barber, Telegraph

Pope Francis made a heartfelt appeal on Sunday (14 April), calling for a stop to any actions that may fuel the "spiral of violence" in the Middle East that risk plunging the region into an even wider war.

The Pope's appeal follows last night massive drone and missile attack by Iran against Israel in retribution for the earlier Israeli attack on the Iranian diplomatic mission in Damascus. Most of the drones and missiles were intercepted and destroyed by Israeli, US, UK, Jordanian and other forces.

The Pope said he is following with "prayer and concern, even sorrow" the news arriving in recent hours about the worsening situation in Israel following the intervention by Iran. He emphasised that nobody should threaten the existence of others, and that instead all nations should "take the side of peace," helping Israelis and Palestinians to live in two States, side by side, in security. He added, "it is their deep and legitimate desire, and it is their right! Two neighboring States."

The Pope renewed his appeal for a ceasefire in Gaza and that the path of negotiation be pursued "with determination." Recalling the suffering of the population in Gaza, "plunged into a humanitarian catastrophe," he called for every effort to alleviate their suffering. He prayed that "the hostages kidnapped months ago be released!" 

The Pope renewed his appeal for a ceasefire in Gaza and that the path of negotiation be pursued "with determination." Recalling the suffering of the population in Gaza, "plunged into a humanitarian catastrophe," he called for every effort to alleviate their suffering. He prayed that "the hostages kidnapped months ago be released!" 

The Pope concluded:

“So much suffering! Let us pray for peace. No more war, no more attacks, no more violence! Yes to dialogue and yes to peace!”

President William Ruto speaking at Embakasi Garrison when he flagged off the Kenyan contingent to the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on November 2, 2022. PCS

According to Ruto, the decision was evidence of the collective courage and singular sacrifice of the Haitian Council of Cabinet to ensure that Haiti was a violent-free state. 

"We look forward to the PTC moving with speed to appoint the Prime Minister and Cabinet," the head of state noted in his statement.

President Ruto further lauded the leadership of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) for its steadfast stewardship of the intense consultations that led to the establishment of a transitional council.

"Kenya expresses confidence that the new political leadership will lay a strong foundation for resolution of the crisis in Haiti, restoration of security, afford the Haitian people a political transition," Ruto stated.

The head of state noted that Kenya was in strong solidarity with Haiti and that it was ready to make its contribution within the framework elaborated in the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2699 of 2023.


More to follow...

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