WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama on Friday reiterated US support for Israel's right to defend itself during a call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about the conflict in Gaza.
"The president reiterated US support for Israel's right to defend itself, and expressed regret over the loss of Israeli and Palestinian civilian lives," the White House said in a summary of the conversation.
Netanyahu, who initiated the call, expressed his deep appreciation for US investment in the Iron Dome rocket and mortar defense system, "which has effectively defeated hundreds of incoming rockets from Gaza and saved countless Israeli lives," according to the readout.
The two leaders also "discussed options for de-escalating the situation." However, the White House statement did not provide any details.
Obama on Friday also spoke with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, commending his country's efforts to de-escalate the situation and expressing his hope that these efforts would be successful, the White House said.
"The president expressed regret for the loss of Israeli and Palestinian civilian lives, and underscored the importance of resolving the situation as quickly as possible to restore stability and prevent further loss of life," said a summary of that call, which was initiated by Obama. (AFP)