The World Forum - July 24th, 2024

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Israel cancels White House visit after US doesn't block UN ceasefire vote


US 'perplexed' by Israel cancelling US trip

We're still listening in to the press briefing at the White House, where national security spokesperson John Kirby is talking to reporters hours after the UN passed a resolution calling for an "immediate ceasefire" in Gaza for the first time since the war began.

He says the US is "perplexed" by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to cancel the visit of an Israeli delegation to the White House this week after the US abstained.

"It's a non-binding resolution, so there is no impact at all on Israel and its ability to go after Hamas," Kirby says, reiterating that it does not change the US's policy on the conflict.

Netanyahu's office "seems to be indicating through public statements that we somehow changed here, we haven't - and we get to decide what our policy is," Kirby adds.

Asked what this does to the relationship between Netanyahu and US President Joe Biden, Kirby says Israel remains a "close ally and a friend" of the US.