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Biden welcomes ceasefire, calls for investigation into civilian casualties

US President Joe Biden welcomed the ceasefire reached between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement on Sunday night and called for an investigation into civilian casualties reported amid Operation Breaking Dawn.

"Over these last 72-hours, the United States has worked with officials from Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Egypt, Qatar, Jordan, and others throughout the region to encourage a swift resolution to the conflict," said Biden in a statement.

"My support for Israel’s security is long-standing and unwavering—including its right to defend itself against attacks," stressed the president. "Over these recent days, Israel has defended its people from indiscriminate rocket attacks launched by the terrorist group Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the United States is proud of our support for Israel’s Iron-Dome, which intercepted hundreds of rockets and saved countless lives."

Biden commended Prime Minister Yair Lapid and his government for their leadership amid the operation.

The US president emphasized that civilian casualties in Gaza are "a tragedy," whether they were caused by Israeli strikes or Islamic Jihad rockets that fell within the Strip. "My Administration supports a timely and thorough investigation into all of these reports, and we also call on all parties to fully implement the ceasefire, and to ensure fuel and humanitarian supplies are flowing into Gaza as the fighting subsides."

"As I made clear during my recent trip to Israel and the West Bank, Israelis and Palestinians both deserve to live safely and securely and to enjoy equal measures of freedom, prosperity, and democracy," added Biden. "My Administration will remain engaged with Israeli and Palestinian leaders to support that vision and to implement the initiatives launched during my visit to improve the quality of life for Palestinians and Israelis alike."

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