Israeli leaders thanked the United States after the House passed a foreign aid bill Saturday that provides $26.4 billion in military aid to Israel and humanitarian assistance, including some for Gaza.

Calling it a “much appreciated” step, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on X that the measure “demonstrates strong bipartisan support for Israel and defends Western civilization.” Israeli President Isaac Herzog thanked members of Congress and President Biden: “When the U.S. is strong, Israel is stronger; when Israel is strong, the U.S. is more secure,” he wrote in a statement.

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said that at a time when Israel is facing threats on several fronts, including from Iran, the United States showed “unwavering support.”

The package includes, among other items, $4 billion for replenishing the Iron Dome and David’s Sling defense systems and $1.2 billion for procuring the Iron Beam defense system.

It also includes $9 billion in humanitarian assistance, some of which will be allotted to Gaza. None of the assistance, however, can go toward the largest humanitarian group serving Gaza, the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA), for which the United States suspended funding after Israel alleged that a handful of its employees participated in Hamas’s Oct. 7 attacks.

The measure received bipartisan support, passing 366 to 58 in the chamber that’s narrowly controlled by the GOP. Twenty-one Republicans and 37 Democrats voted against the bill. More than a dozen of those Democrats said in a statement that, while they support Israel’s right to self-defense, supplying more offensive weapons to Israel “could result in more killings of civilians” in Gaza. “Most Americans do not want our government to write a blank check to further Prime Minister Netanyahu’s war in Gaza,” they said.

The Senate is expected to take up the bill this week, and Biden is expected to sign it.

Here’s what else to know

At least 14 people were killed in a days-long raid by Israel’s military at the Nur Shams refugee camp in the occupied West Bank, including a 15-year-old boy, the Palestinian Health Ministry in Ramallah said Saturday. The Israel Defense Forces said in a statement that it had killed 10 militants in the raid at the camp and found an “explosives laboratory.” In a separate West Bank incident Saturday, the Palestinian Health Ministry said, an ambulance driver was fatally shot near the village of al-Sawiya, south of Nablus, while transporting two people allegedly shot by Israeli settlers.

Thousands of protesters in Tel Aviv called for the Israeli government’s resignation and for the release of hostages held by Hamas. They gathered on Saturday ahead of Passover, the Jewish holiday that begins Monday. A video shown at the protest in Tel Aviv said, “Until they return, it’s not a holiday, and it’s not Seder.”

At least 34,049 people have been killed and 76,901 injured in Gaza since the war began, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, which does not distinguish between civilians and combatants but says the majority of the dead are women and children. Israel estimates that about 1,200 people were killed in Hamas’s Oct. 7 attack, including more than 300 soldiers, and says that 260 soldiers have been killed since its military operation in Gaza began.



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