Netanyahu confidant expected to meet US officials for talks on war

A close confidant of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to meet with Biden administration officials on Tuesday, according to a source familiar with the plans, after the Israeli leader vowed a “long fight” ahead in the war in Gaza.

Ron Dermer, considered one of Netanyahu’s closest allies, is expected to meet with officials from the White House and the State Department to discuss the next phase of the war in Gaza, the source told CNN.

Dermer is a member of Israel’s war cabinet who previously served as ambassador to the United States.

He is expected to meet with National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and members of Congress, according to Axios, which first reported the meetings.

The National Security Council told CNN they do not have any meetings to announce “at this time.”

The expected meetings come as the White House has looked for Israel to move away from the high intensity war it has waged for nearly three months in Gaza that has resulted in approximately 20,000 people killed, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Healthy in Ramallah, which draws its data from the Hamas-controlled Ministry of Health in Gaza.

Last week, the White House told reporters that Israel has assured the United States that it would transition to operations of lower intensity, though the administration would not put a specific timeline on the transition. US officials previously told CNN they expect Israel could shift its tactics to more localized operations by January.

Netanyahu vowed Monday that the war in Gaza was still a “long fight and it is not close to ending.” After his second visit to Gaza since the war began on October 7, Netanyahu said in a statement that Israel would “deepen the fighting.”