Benjamin Netanyahu has told Republican Senators that Israel will continue its efforts to defeat Hamas in Gaza, US lawmakers have said, after the Israeli prime minister addressed them via video link.

Iran Press/ West Asia: “We asked him for an update, and we got it on the war, on the release of the hostages, and in the efforts to defeat Hamas. We told him Israel has every right to defend themselves, and he said that’s exactly what they continue to do,” Senator John Barrasso said.

Netanyahu’s speech came almost a week after Chuck Schumer, the Senate’s Democratic majority leader, and the US’s most senior Jewish politician, gave a speech branding Netanyahu an obstacle to peace and urging elections be held in Israel.

Netanyahu estimated the death toll in Gaza at 28,000, Senator Josh Hawley has told the New York Times.

That figure places the number killed in the besieged enclave since Israel began its offensive in October at 4,000 lower than Gaza’s Ministry of Health, which estimates at least 31,923 deaths as of March 20.

Hawley told the New York Times that Netanyahu insisted that Israel was making every effort to minimize civilian casualties.

“He was very mindful of it, he talked about it at some length,” Hawley said.


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