Jordan’s King Abdullah II will meet with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in Aqaba to discuss the Gaza war.
Jordan’s King Abdullah II will host Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday for talks on “dangerous developments” in war-torn Gaza, the royal palace announced in a statement.
Since October 7, more than 23,300 people in Gaza have been killed in Israel’s bombardment, mostly women and children, while 59,410 others have been injured.
Taking place in the Red Sea resort of Aqaba, the summit “will be held within the framework of Jordan’s efforts to coordinate Arab positions to push for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and ensure the uninterrupted delivery of humanitarian aid,” the Jordanian royal palace said.
The gathering comes as Amman and Cairo work on achieving a ceasefire in neighbouring Gaza as concerns over an all-out regional war and refugee crisis mount.
Egypt, alongside Qatar, emerged as a key player in mediation talks since the beginning of the war.
Doha and Cairo’s mediation had resulted in a temporary truce that lasted between November 24 and December 1 following two extensions under wider efforts to reach a permanent ceasefire.
The pause led to the release of at least 110 Israeli and foreign captives from Gaza, according to a Doha News tally. As part of the deal, Israel released 240 Palestinian women and children from Israeli prisons.
An Israeli delegation reportedly landed in Cairo on Monday to resume “negotiations aimed at releasing Israeli prisoners held by resistance factions in Gaza,” Egyptian sources told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.
The sources added that Cairo told officials to “suspend” its participation in mediation talks following Israel’s killing of senior Hamas official, Saleh al-Arouri, in Lebanon.
The Jordan meeting comes amid U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit to Tel Aviv and the West Bank, where he met Israeli and Palestinian officials.
Blinken’s trip comes as part of his diplomacy tour that included Turkiye, Greece, Jordan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia. The regional visits marked his fourth since the beginning of the war in Gaza.
In Tel Aviv, Blinken reiterated Washington’s support for Israel’s right to self-defence saying, “It’s vital that Israel achieves its very legitimate objectives.” The U.S. has repeatedly rejected a ceasefire in Gaza, echoing Israel’s stance.
“We know that facing an enemy that embeds itself among civilians – who hide in and fires from schools, from hospitals – makes this incredibly challenging. But the daily toll on civilians in Gaza, particularly on children, is far too high,” Blinken told the press.
Blinken visit was met with protests in Ramallah, with demonstrators carrying placards that read, “Blinken you are not welcome here.”
The U.S. Secretary of State also met Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during his visit, where the two discussed the latest developments in Gaza, the West Bank and Jerusalem.
“President Abbas warned of the danger of the measures taken by the Israeli occupation authorities aimed at displacing Palestinian people from the Gaza Strip or the West Bank, including Jerusalem,” Palestine’s news agency Wafa reported.
Abbas stressed “the need to immediately stop the war of extermination against the Palestinian people in Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem,” Wafa added
Israel has intensified its raids in the West Bank since the beginning of the war, killing at least 314 Palestinians, including 80 children, while detaining more than 5,780 others, including former detainees.