• Blinken flew to Amman after talks with Gulf Arab leaders in Riyadh
  • The US top diplomat will meet Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi

On Tuesday, US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken headed to Jordan, where he will discuss ways to boost aid deliveries into Gaza and quietly thank the kingdom for its help during recent Iran-Israel clashes.

Blinken flew to Amman after talks with Gulf Arab leaders in Riyadh, part of his seventh tour of the region since the October 7 attack by Hamas on Israel.
The US top diplomat will meet Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, as well as the UN humanitarian aid and reconstruction coordinator for Gaza, Sigrid Kaag.

Later in the day, Blinken will head to Israel, where he will discuss the latest negotiations aimed at securing a temporary ceasefire and a release of hostages.
President Joe Biden’s administration, despite criticism abroad and rising fury on US university campuses, has supported Israel in its relentless campaign against Hamas but also urged its ally to do more to protect civilians.

“President Biden has insisted that Israel take specific, concrete, measurable steps to better address humanitarian suffering, civilian harm and the safety of aid workers in Gaza,” Blinken told Gulf Arab foreign ministers in Riyadh on Monday.

“We have seen measurable progress in the last few weeks, including the opening of new crossings, an increased volume of aid delivery to Gaza and within Gaza, and the building of the US maritime corridor, which will open in the coming weeks,” Blinken said.

“But it is not enough. We still need to get more aid in and around Gaza,” he said.

Biden warned Israel that future support was at stake after an April 1 Israeli strike killed seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen, the charity founded by celebrity Spanish-American chef Jose Andres.

The United States said that Israel has since taken steps to avoid such deaths in the future, including coordinating more directly with aid groups working in Gaza.

But the situation remains dire in Gaza, where the vast majority of residents have fled their homes and the United Nations has warned of a looming famine.

The Biden administration is addressing the crisis by building a temporary pier to bring in aid, an extraordinary step to deal with concerns about a friendly country and major recipient of US assistance.

Jordan, which has diplomatic relations with Israel and a large Palestinian population, is especially sensitive to tensions in the Palestinian territories.
Earlier in April, Jordan shot down Iranian drones fired at Israel in response to a deadly air strike on the Iranian consulate in Syria.

Jordan, while working with the United States, has insisted that it does not want to be caught in the middle of the conflict.