Biden and Netanyahu
Biden and NetanyahuHaim Zach/GPO

US President Joe Biden confirmed on Tuesday that he asked Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for a pause in the fighting in Gaza.

"I asked Prime Minister Netanyahu for a pause in the fighting in Gaza in a call on Monday,” Biden said, as quoted by Reuters.

Biden’s comments came hours after Barak Ravid of Axios reported that Biden urged Netanyahu in their call on Monday to agree to a three-day pause in the fighting to allow progress in releasing some of the hostages held by Hamas in Gaza.

According to a proposal that is being discussed between the US, Israel and Qatar, Hamas would release 10-15 hostages and use the three-day pause to verify the identities of all the hostages and deliver a list of names of the people it is holding, a US official told Ravid.

The two US and Israeli officials said Netanyahu told Biden he doesn't trust Hamas' intentions and doesn't believe they are ready to agree to a deal regarding the hostages.

He also said that Israel could lose the current international support it has for the operation if the fighting stops for three days, the officials said.

The Israeli official told Axios that part of Netanyahu's reservation is because Hamas attacked a group of Israeli soldiers, kidnapped one of them, and killed several others during a humanitarian pause during the 2014 Operation Protective Edge.

The Prime Minister's Office declined to comment. The White House referred Axios to the readout of Tuesday's call between Biden and Netanyahu, which said the two leaders "discussed ongoing efforts to secure the release of hostages held by Hamas."

The White House added that it does not comment on Biden's private conversations.

The US has been pushing for so-called “humanitarian pauses” in the fighting in order to allow for more humanitarian aid to enter the Gaza Strip and facilitate and the potential release of hostages being held by Hamas.

During a visit to Israel last Friday, US Secretary of State pushed for such a pause. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later made clear that Israel will not agree to a ceasefire in Gaza without the release of the hostages being held by Hamas.

On Saturday, Biden said that progress had been made on securing a so-called "humanitarian pause" in the fighting between Israel and Hamas, though he would not provide further details.

In an interview with ABC News on Monday, Netanyahu once again rejected the idea of a ceasefire in Gaza unless hostages are released.

"There will be no ceasefire, general ceasefire, in Gaza without the release of our hostages," Netanyahu stressed. "As far as tactical little pauses, an hour here, an hour there. We've had them before, I suppose, will check the circumstances in order to enable goods, humanitarian goods to come in, or our hostages, individual hostages to leave. But I don't think there's going to be a general ceasefire."

Asked if there would be such a pause if Hamas to agree to the release of hostages, the Prime Minister responded, "There will be a ceasefire for that purpose.”