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Kamala Harris to discuss post-conflict Gaza during U.N.’s COP 28 climate talks


Vice President Kamala Harris will speak to Middle East partners about ways to unify the Gaza Strip and West Bank “under one entity” for Palestinians on the sidelines of a weekend climate summit in Dubai, according to the White House.

Ms. Harris will attend the U.N.’s COP 28 climate talks in the United Area Emirates on Friday and Saturday.

A White House official said the climate and renewable energy won’t be the only thing on the agenda, as Israel pummels Hamas-controlled Gaza in response to Oct. 7 terror raids.

Meetings with regional leaders will focus on “day-after planning” for Gaza. For now, the fate of the strip of land between Israel and Egypt is unclear.

“In her meetings, the Vice President will outline our principles for post-conflict Gaza, lay out specific proposals that put Palestinian voices at the center, and build regional support for our efforts,” a White House official said. “She will emphasize that any post-conflict plan for Gaza must include a clear political horizon for the Palestinian people and ensure that Gaza and the West Bank are reunified under one entity.”

President Biden and Ms. Harris are trying to strike a balance in responding to the October attacks in which Palestinian militants in Hamas killed over 1,000 people in Israel and took scores of hostages.

They’ve aired steadfast support for Israel, saying the nation must respond to Hamas, while urging Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his defense team to show restraint in civilian-heavy areas. Reports that thousands of Palestinian civilians have died in Gaza sparked protests, particularly among young people, across the U.S., heaping pressure on Mr. Biden.

Ostensibly, the Gaza issue is a sideline topic in Dubai. The main purpose of Ms. Harris’ trip is to discuss climate initiatives with global partners.

“Throughout her engagements, the vice president will make clear that the Biden-Harris administration is delivering on the most ambitious climate agenda in history, both at home and abroad, and she will advance our efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, support adaptation, and boost climate resilience,” the White House official said.

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