Blinken: U.S. Attempting to Verify Reports of Several Americans Killed, Missing in Israel
The secretary of state said President Joe Biden has told him to “make sure that we’re providing Israel everything it needs… to deal with the attacks from Hamas”
BY PETER WADE
SECRETARY OF STATE Antony Blinken said that the U.S. is “working to verify” reports that “several Americans were killed” and others were taken hostage in Israel over the weekend.
“We have reports that several Americans were killed. We’re working overtime to verify that. At the same time, there are reports of missing Americans and there again, we’re working to verify those reports,” Blinken told Dana Bash on Sunday’s State of the Union.
Hamas launched an unprecedented coordinated attack against Israel Saturday, killing hundreds and taking dozens hostage, including women, children and the elderly. The Palestinian military group’s surprise assault from the south has Israeli forces fighting to regain control of several areas. Israeli authorities reported that at least 500 people have died and another 2,000 were injured, while the Palestinian Health Ministry said that 232 have died and 1,790 were injured in retaliatory attacks.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office called the attack a “murderous terrorist assault from the Gaza Strip” and announced his Security Cabinet declared war, which grants formal authorization for “significant military steps.”
Blinken said that President Joe Biden has told him to “make sure that we’re providing Israel everything it needs in this moment to deal with the attacks from Hamas.”