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Netanyahu to address U.S. Congress on July 24

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Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he will "present the truth" about the war against Hamas in Gaza when he addresses the U.S. Congress on July 24 during a visit to Washington, Republican leaders said on Thursday.

Benjamin Netanyahu © Mena Today 

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he will "present the truth" about the war against Hamas in Gaza when he addresses the U.S. Congress on July 24 during a visit to Washington, Republican leaders said on Thursday.

Netanyahu will speak to a joint session of the House of Representatives and the Senate, House Speaker Mike Johnson and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement.

"I am very moved to have the privilege of representing Israel before both Houses of Congress and to present the truth about our just war against those who seek to destroy us to the representatives of the American people and the entire world," Netanyahu said in the statement.

Netanyahu's visit comes amid tensions between him and U.S. President Joe Biden, who has supported Israel's campaign in Gaza but has recently been more critical of its tactics and withheld shipment of some bombs.

It was not immediately clear if Netanyahu would meet with Biden during his U.S. visit.

Biden's support for Israel has emerged as a political liability for the president in the run-up to November's elections, with some Democrats and voters furious over the thousands of civilian deaths in Gaza.

Republicans have also criticized Biden for his position on the war, saying he is not doing enough to help Israel.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a separate statement that he had joined in making the invitation to Netanyahu.

"I have clear and profound disagreements with the prime minister, which I have voiced both privately and publicly and will continue to do so," Schumer said. "But because America’s relationship with Israel is ironclad and transcends one person or prime minister I joined the request for him to speak.”

Hamas attacked Israeli territory last Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and capturing more than 250 hostages, according to Israeli tallies. About half the hostages were freed in the November truce.

Israel in response launched a military assault on Gaza that has since killed more than 36,000 people, according to health officials in the territory, who say thousands more dead are feared buried under the rubble.

Reporting by Dan Whitcomb and Costas Pitas

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