Follow the White House press briefing

Palestinian demonstrators run for cover from Israeli fire and tear gas during a protest against the U.S. embassy's move to Je

Follow the White House press briefing

Israeli fire has also killed dozens of Palestinians during mass protests along the Gaza border on Monday.

Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah said during a White House press briefing that the violence against Palestinian protesters was a "gruesome and unfortunate propaganda attempt" by Hamas.

"What I'm saying is that we believe that Hamas as an organization is engaged in cynical action that's leading to these deaths", Shah answered.

Shah's remarks echoed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's insistence that Hamas was exclusively culpable for the violence.

Alistair Burt, Britain's minister for the Middle East, said it was "deplorable that extremist elements may have been seeking to exploit these protests for their own violent purposes".

The violence made it the deadliest day in Gaza since the devastating cross-border war between the territory's Hamas rulers and Israel four years ago.

A reporter contrasted violence along the border of Israel in Gaza on Monday with the "celebratory air in Jerusalem" as the new US embassy opened there that same day.

Shah says that "Israel has the right to defend itself" and is blaming Hamas for the "dire situation".

No Israeli soldier or civilian was killed or wounded in Monday's clashes, according to Vox.

Latest News