Blinken's visit to the Middle East will be part of Washington's efforts to build on the Gaza truce. US, Israeli and Palestinian officials have not published Blinken’s full itinerary. The State Department announced his visit on Thursday, saying he would “discuss recovery efforts and working together to build better futures for Israelis and Palestinians”.
Blinken’s Middle East trip would include visit to Egypt, which mediated the Gaza truce between Israel and Hamas-led Palestinian militants, as well as to Jordan, the source said.
The cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in Gaza appeared to be holding as of early Friday morning, after the two sides fought for 11 days. The ceasefire began at 2:00 a.m. local time on Friday.
The cease-fire was brokered by Egypt. Two Egyptian delegations will travel to Tel Aviv and the Palestinian territories to observe implementation of the truce.
In addition to Israel and Hamas, the cease-fire also included Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the second-most-powerful armed group in Gaza.
Palestinians in Gaza broke out in celebration following the truce, waving flags and shooting guns into the air. Similar celebrations occurred in the West Bank.