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US: Israeli military operation in Gaza does not amount to war crimes

The United States announced yesterday that it does not believe the military operations launched by Israel on the Gaza Strip amount to "war crimes", Anadolu news agency reported.

White House spokesman, Josh Earnest said during the daily briefing, "We do not see anything like this" in response to a question about the Palestinian accusation against Israel using disproportionate force amounting to war crimes in the attacks against Gaza.

Earnest said: "The US is enthusiastic to send US Secretary of State John Kerry to the region to negotiate a ceasefire agreement. I think there is a desire to increase our ability to influence this situation, so that we can make some success in reaching a ceasefire agreement."

Kerry is scheduled to arrive in Cairo today, a day after Egypt announced an initiative for a ceasefire agreement between Israel and the Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip.

Earnest commented on the US position on the Israeli military operation on Gaza, saying: "There is no doubt that the United States stands with Israel as they confront these threats, but at the same time we also have a concern for the well-being of innocent civilians on both sides."

The Israeli army has launched a military operation dubbed "Operation Protective Edge" against the Gaza Strip for the second week under the pretext of stopping rocket fire from Gaza.

Israeli leaders threaten to expand the military operation to a ground offensive.

So far, the Israeli assault on Gaza has claimed the lives of 186 Palestinians and injured more than 1,385 others, mostly civilians, women and children, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

Israel announced that 211 Israelis were injured by rockets fired from Gaza, the majority of them suffered panic attacks.


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