Biden says maimed American held by Hamas is ‘here with us today’ at Rose Garden party

WASHINGTON — President Biden was compelled to right himself after one more brutal gaffe Monday night, when he informed attendees at a White House Jewish heritage celebration that maimed US citizen Hersh Goldberg-Polin was “here with us today” — when in reality he stays a hostage within the Gaza Strip.

“My administration is working around the clock to free the remaining hostages, just as we have freed hostages already. And here with us today is Hersh Goldberg-Polin,” Biden, 81, introduced at the Rose Garden party.

A second later, the president added, “He is not here with us. But he is still being held by Hamas.”

Goldberg-Polin, a twin Israeli citizen, is among the many 5 recognized Americans nonetheless held by Hamas terrorists after being kidnapped from southern Israel on Oct. 7.

The 23-year-old abductee had certainly one of his fingers amputated following his abduction because of accidents suffered through the assaults that killed about 1,200 folks, together with at least 33 Americans.

He was featured final month in a Hamas propaganda video.

Other US residents nonetheless believed to be held by Hamas embrace Tenafly, NJ, native Edan Alexander, 20, and former New York City resident Omer Neutra, 22, each of whom had been serving within the Israeli army at the time of the shock assault.

Father of three Sagui Dekel-Chen, 35, who moved from Connecticut to Israel as a toddler, and Keith Siegel, 65, who moved to Israel in 1980, additionally stay lacking after being kidnapped close to the Gaza border.

It is unknown how lots of the American hostages stay alive.

The Rose Garden occasion was attended by each first son Hunter Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland days earlier than the youthful Biden faces a pair of June trials for alleged tax fraud and gun crimes — though their prior joint attendance at a state dinner final 12 months drew detrimental scrutiny.

Biden hosted the outside occasion, which featured a pair hundred friends and drink stations on the aspect of the long-lasting backyard, hours after International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Karim Khan formally sought an arrest warrant in opposition to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for alleged conflict crimes.

Biden slammed the motion, however mistakenly referred to the ICC because the “International Court of Justice,” a special establishment additionally based mostly within the The Hague, Netherlands.

“Let me be clear: We reject the ICC’s application for arrest warrants against Israeli leaders,” Biden mentioned.

The president added, “Contrary to allegations against Israel made by the International Court of Justice, what’s happening is not genocide – we reject that. And we’ll always stand with Israel.”

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