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Biden marks start of Ramadan by recognizing ‘moment of immense pain’ for Muslims

President Biden marked the start of Ramadan on Sunday with a statement recognizing the “moment of immense pain” for many Muslim Americans and pledging to lead international efforts to deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza.

“Tonight—as the new crescent moon marks the beginning of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan—Jill and I extend our best wishes and prayers to Muslims across our country and around the world,” Biden wrote in the statement Sunday. 

“The sacred month is a time for reflection and renewal. This year, it comes at a moment of immense pain. The war in Gaza has inflicted terrible suffering on the Palestinian people,” he added.

Biden recognized the more than 30,000 Palestinians estimated to have been killed during the operation in Gaza, which Israel launched in response to the Oct. 7 massacre that left approximately 1,200 Israelis dead and about 250 taken hostage.

Some of the Palestinians killed in Gaza “are family members of American Muslims, who are deeply grieving their lost loved ones today,” Biden wrote.

He also recognized the nearly 2 million Palestinians estimated to be displaced and in need of food, water, medicine and shelter, the statement read.

“As Muslims gather around the world over the coming days and weeks to break their fast, the suffering of the Palestinian people will be front of mind for many. It is front of mind for me,” he said.

Biden – who has faced sharp criticism in some Muslim American communities over his response to the war in Gaza – highlighted the work his administration is doing to deliver aid to Gaza, including establishing a temporary pier and carrying out airdrops in coordination with other countries. Biden also pledged to continue working with Israel to expand deliveries by land, “insisting that it facilitate more routes and open more crossings to get more aid to more people.”

Biden reiterated his commitment to building toward a two-state solution, and he touched on the experience Muslim Americans face in the United States, with a “resurgence of hate and violence” toward their communities.

He addressed Muslim Americans directly.

“To Muslims across our country, please know that you are deeply valued members of our American family,” Biden wrote in the statement. “To those who are grieving during this time of war, I hear you, I see you, and I pray you find solace in your faith, family, and community. And to all who are marking the beginning of Ramadan tonight, I wish you a safe, healthy, and blessed month. Ramadan kareem.”

Source: The Hill

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