Skip to main content

Israel opposition leader, in Washington, calls hostage deal hard but 'doable'

1 min

A deal to release hostages held in Gaza is difficult but "doable", Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid said on Monday after he and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed the need for Israel and Hamas to resolve their conflict.

Yair Lapid and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday in Washington DC © X

A deal to release hostages held in Gaza is difficult but "doable", Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid said on Monday after he and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed the need for Israel and Hamas to resolve their conflict.

"It is a difficult deal. This is a deal we might not like, but it's doable, and therefore needs to be made," Lapid said. Talks have been held in Egypt on a deal for freeing hostages and calling a temporary ceasefire.

Lapid, who will also meet White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, is visiting Washington as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces pressure at home and aboard over the war in Gaza. Some families of hostages have demanded his government do more to bring home hostages captured by Hamas in its deadly Oct. 7 attack that triggered the Israeli offensive.

"There are enough good people in the Israeli government," Lapid told reporters outside the State Department. If need be, he added, "the Israeli opposition will give a security net to the government in order to do the hostage deal because we need to bring them back home."

Fellow opposition politician Benny Gantz, who unlike Lapid is part of Netanyahu's war cabinet, last week called for national elections to take place in September. Lapid, asked about the call, declined to speak about Israeli politics while in the U.S.

Lapid's visit comes days after President Joe Biden urged Netanyahu to empower his negotiators to conclude a deal.

Biden also warned Netanyahu for the first time that U.S. support could be conditioned on Israel doing more to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza and protecting civilians.

Asked about the ultimatum, Lapid said Biden "is obviously worried about the humanitarian situation in Gaza."

He added: "Israel is worried as well" and must "do our best in order to avoid hurting the people of Gaza. We have no war with the children of Gaza... on the other hand, you have to remember we are fighting a terrorist organization that's using them as human shields."

By Simon Lewis

Tags

Related

Gaza

Reports suggest strong ties between UNRWA and Hamas

UNRWA, The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, has updated that 191 of its workers have been killed in the Gaza Strip since the beginning of the war

Subscribe to our newsletter

Mena banner 4

To make this website run properly and to improve your experience, we use cookies. For more detailed information, please check our Cookie Policy.

  • Necessary cookies enable core functionality. The website cannot function properly without these cookies, and can only be disabled by changing your browser preferences.