Kamala Harris Calls On Hamas To Agree To Immediate 6-Week Cease-Fire

Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at the Edmund Pettus Bridge during an event to commemorate the 59th anniversary of
Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at the Edmund Pettus Bridge during an event to commemorate the 59th anniversary of "Bloody Sunday" in Selma, Alabama, on Sunday. SAUL LOEB AFP via Getty Images

Vice President Kamala Harris called for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza as Israel’s relentless bombardment of the region pushes forward.

“The threat of Hamas poses to the people of Israel must be eliminated. And given the immense scale of suffering in Gaza, there must be an immediate cease-fire for at least the next six weeks, which is what is currently on the table” Harris said Sunday in Selma, Alabama. Harris made her appearance at the Edmund Pettus Bridge for a speech on the anniversary of “Bloody Sunday.”

“This will get the hostages out and a significant amount of aid in. This would allow us to build something more enduring to ensure Israel is secure and to respect the right of the Palestinian people to dignity, freedom and self-determination,” she added.

Harris’ remarks followed President Joe Biden’s recently watered-down optimism for the 6-week cease-fire, as well as his Friday approval of sending humanitarian aid into Gaza.

Earlier this week, a White House official said that the Israelis “have more or less accepted” the cease-fire proposal, which both Israel and Hamas militants would need to agree to.

Harris’ push for the cease-fire also comes days after Israel Defense Forces killed more than 100 people and injured more than 750 others who gathered outside of food aid trucks for food.

“The Israeli government must do more to significantly increase the flow of aid. No excuses,” said Harris.

“As President Joe Biden said on Friday, the United States is committed to urgently get more lifesaving assistance, to innocent Palestinians in need. Yesterday, the Department of Defense carried out its first airdrop of humanitarian assistance. And the United States will continue these airdrops. And we will work on a new route, by sea, to deliver aid,” she added.

The current conflict most recently stems from Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack in Israel where the Palestinian militant group killed 1,200 people and took approximately 250 others hostage ― but tensions between Israel and Gaza, as well as Israel’s atrocities against the people in the region, began further back. Since Oct. 7, Israel has killed more than 30,200 people and injured more than 71,000 others in Gaza, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. Many more are facing starvation.

“Vice President Harris’s push for a temporary cease-fire, or what the administration used to call a humanitarian pause, is half a step forward,” IfNotNow national spokesperson Eva Borgwardt said in a statement emailed to HuffPost.

IfNotNow is an organization and movement working to stop the U.S.’s support of “Israel’s apartheid system” and to ensure the welfare of all Palestinians and Israelis.

“It makes the ongoing weapons transfers to Israel that much more indefensible. True peace requires the Biden-Harris administration  to halt weapons transfers, demand Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza alongside a full hostage exchange, and lay out a timetable for Israel to end its apartheid rule over Palestinians,” Borgwardt added.