Wednesday, May 22, 2024

White House Seeks Approval for Over $1 Billion Weapons Shipment to Israel

The White House has formally notified Congress of its intention to allocate more than $1 billion in weapons to Israel, including tank rounds, mortars, and armoured tactical vehicles, sources report.

The proposed package, as outlined by Reuters news agency, awaits approval from lawmakers before it can be finalized.

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Last week, President Joe Biden stated his intent to suspend weapons deliveries to Israel in the event of a significant incursion into Gaza's city of Rafah.

Reports on Tuesday indicated that Israeli tanks had advanced further into residential sectors of south-eastern Rafah, as conveyed by Palestinian sources to Reuters.

In response to concerns over the potential use of 2,000lb (900kg) bombs in ground operations, President Biden remarked that he had delayed their shipment due to the civilian casualties observed in Gaza.

The package presented to Congress marks the first such initiative since the Biden administration temporarily halted arms transfers to Israel last week. It includes allocations of $700 million for tank ammunition, $500 million for tactical vehicles, and $60 million for mortar rounds, according to the Associated Press.

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A recent US State Department report suggested that certain American-made weapons supplied to Israel might have been used in ways that contravene international law. Despite this, the report refrained from definitively accusing the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) of legal violations, citing assurances from Israel regarding the lawful use of US-provided arms.

In a separate development, Congress recently passed a bill authorizing $95 billion in aid for Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan.

The issue of weapons transfers to Israel has become a contentious political matter for President Biden in the lead-up to the 2024 White House election.

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Aarav Joshi
Aarav Joshi
Aarav Joshi is a seasoned content writer with a passion for covering worldly and international news stories. His journey in journalism began as a reporter for the BBC, where he honed his skills in researching and crafting compelling narratives. He has also contributed articles to 'The Times of India,' one of India's leading newspapers, delving into diverse topics ranging from politics and economics to culture and human interest stories.
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