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Biden meets with families of US-nationals detainees in Gaza Strip

 


Biden meets with families of

US-nationals detainees in Gaza Strip


US President Joe Biden

will meet with families of US detainees in

the Gaza Strip

dual nationals, a senior administration official said on Wednesday.


"This meeting is the first direct meeting between the US president

and members of hostage families detained


by Hamas during

its unprecedented attack against Israel on October 7

 the official said, on condition of anonymity.


Earlier, the White House's Strategic Communications Coordinator

for the National Security Council

John Kirby

confirmed that some 9 US citizens (dual nationals)

remain captured by Hamas in the Gaza Strip.



There are still 9 hostages

maybe more

we don't have accurate information

we know there's at least an American woman missing

we don't know much about her and her condition


unfortunately we don't know about other Americans in custody

we don't have information," Kirby said in an interview with Fox News.


Kirby stressed that

the United States was reaching out to the detainees' relatives to

help obtain information about them, noting that 

Washington continued to work to restore the humanitarian truce in Gaza.


US treasury announces new US

 and UK sanctions on Hamas


The United States

and the United Kingdom have imposed new sanctions on

Hamas officials and mediators

the Treasury Department announced on Wednesday.


The Ministry stated that

the sanctions targeted eight individuals working to

sustain Hamas activity by representing

the movement's interests abroad and managing its finances.


This is the fourth package of

U.S. sanctions on Hamas since October 7.


The most recent was on

November 14

when the United States announced

 a series of new sanctions imposed in coordination

with the United Kingdom on Hamas officials

and associated individuals, especially an Islamic Jihad official.


The Ministry indicated that

the individuals targeted by the sanctions were the representative of

the Iran jihad Nasser Abu Sharif, the leader of


the jihad Akram al-Ajouri

as well as the Lebanese-based banking

company Nabil Shuman

which is accused of transferring between Hamas and Tehran.


It also targets British

sanctions coordinated with Washington

4 senior Hamas leaders, and two financiers.


Hamas condemns

in the strongest terms Washington

and London's decision to impose sanctions on figures in the movement


Hamas confirmed that

the "unfair decision" 

by Washington and London to impose sanctions on

leading figures and cadres in the movement is part of 

"the complicity of the two governments

with the Zionist entity in its aggression against Palestinians."


Hamas stated in a statement: 

"We condemn in the strongest terms the announcement

by President Biden's administration and the British government of


sanctions against

leading figures and cadres of the movement.

We consider this action to be part of the collusion of

the United States and British governments with the Zionist entity in

its aggression against our people and demonizing its legitimate resistance."


The statement added:

"This unjust decision, based on false allegations and incitement

by the Zionist entity, will not deter Hamas from continuing

its duty to

defend the legitimate national rights of our Palestinian people.


In its statement

Hamas called on the United States Administration

and the British Government once again to review


its aggressive policies towards our Palestinian people

and to stop the policy of defective alignment with


the Zionist criminal side

which commits the most egregious crimes

against

our people

our land and our Islamic and Christian sanctities.


On Wednesday

the United States announced new sanctions linked to

the war against Hamas, targeting eight officials and representatives

who help run the movement's financial network.


These sanctions

coordinated with Britain, are the Treasury's latest response to

Hamas's October 7 attack against Israel.


The sanctions also prohibit access to property and bank accounts in the United States and prohibit designated persons from doing business with Americans. 


 "The list included individuals residing in Gaza, the West Bank

Lebanon and Turkey. Among them was Ismail Barhoum. "


The US Treasury

Department claimed that


"Ismail Barhoum is a member of the Political Bureau of

the Gaza Strip

and worked with Hamas Finance Minister Zahir Jabarin

who is also sanctioned, to pool funds from

the global funding network into the organization's financial accounts."


As the war on

Gaza enters its 68th day

Israeli forces continue to bomb cities and governorates in

the north and south of the Gaza Strip, amid violent clashes

and international fears over the deterioration of

the humanitarian disaster in the Gaza Strip.