India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor could be a reason behind Hamas attack: Biden
Biden, who made the remark at a joint news conference in Washington with visiting Australian PM Anthony Albanese, however added that his analysis is based on instinct.
US president Joe Biden (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)
US PRESIDENT Joe Biden is convinced that the announcement made about the ambitious India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEEC) at the G20 leaders’ summit in New Delhi in India in September was one of the reasons why Palestinian militant outfit Hamas launched a terrorist strike on Israel.
The IMEEC is supposed to integrate the regions with a network of railroads.
Israel launched a massive counter-offensive against Hamas after unprecedented attacks by the militant group on October 7 killed more than 1,400 people. Biden, however, told reporters at a joint news conference in Washington with the visiting Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese that his analysis is based on his instinct and does not have any proof for this.
“I’m convinced one of the reasons Hamas attacked when they did, and I have no proof of this, just my instinct tells me, is because of the progress we were making towards regional integration for Israel, and regional integration overall. We can’t leave that work behind,” the president, who was in India for the G20 summit, said.
This is the second time in less than a week that Biden has mentioned the IMEEC as a potential reason for the terrorist attack by Hamas. The new economic corridor, which many see as an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, was jointly announced by the leaders of the US, India, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, France, Germany, Italy and the European Union on the sidelines of the G20 summit.
The corridor comprises an eastern corridor connecting India to the Gulf region and a northern corridor connecting the Gulf region to Europe.
Biden, who visited Israel and Jordan in the wake of the deadly conflicts, said in the past few weeks, he has spoken to leaders throughout the region, including the king of Jordan, president of Egypt, president of the Palestinian National Authority and the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, about making sure there’s real hope in the region for a better future about the need to work toward a greater integration for Israel while insisting that the aspirations of the Palestinian people will be part of that future as well.
(With PTI inputs)