The White House is pictured in Washington D.C.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
THE WHITE HOUSE
March 16, 2018
Dear Professor and Dr. Goldin,
Thank you for your letter. During the Gaza conference Jared Kushner and I hosted at the White House earlier this week, I delivered remarks to the assembled representatives. The assembled officials represented the United Nations, the European Union, the Office of the Quartet, and the following countries: Bahrain, Canada, Cyprus, Egypt, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Qatar, Sweden, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. In those remarks, I raised the humanitarian and security issues concerning Gaza, as well as the return of Hadar and Oron, and the missing Israeli civilians. Specifically, I would like you to know that I said the following to them:I would like to suggest that we visit the border between Gaza and Israel and Gaza and Egypt together, and take a tour given by the Israelis and Egyptians to see the significant challenges that Egypt and Israel face, including the attack tunnels built by Hamas. Perhaps, after understanding those challenges, we can come up with other realistic ideas. For those of you who have not yet taken these tours, I urge you to do so.
Lastly, I must raise another humanitarian situation, as my colleague Nickolay did in front of the UN Security Council a few weeks ago: Hamas must return the missing IDF soldiers who were taken by Hamas, as well as the missing Israeli civilians. I hope that I can count on all of you to work with me on this important humanitarian situation as well, and the same way I encouraged you to meet with Israelis in the Gaza border area, and Palestinians from Gaza to learn their stories, I encourage you to meet these families as well.
Additionally, in my recent op-ed published in The Washington Post
, I wrote:
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Hamas must also address another humanitarian issue and return missing Israel Defense Forces soldiers who were taken by Hamas, as well as Israeli civilians. There is a way out for Gaza, if only Hamas has the courage to admit failure and chart a new course.
Having met both of you, the Shaul family, as well as the Mengistu and al-Sayed families, I would like you to know that all of you are on my mind. I wish nothing more than the swift return of all of your children.
I wish you both the best in these trying times. My family and I will continue to pray for all of you.
Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiations
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