US President Joe Biden
US President Joe BidenREUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/Pool

A senior Biden Administration official stated during a background press call on the humanitarian situation in Gaza that the administration supports Israel's goal of eliminating the Hamas terrorist organization as a threat and ruling power in Gaza, even as it pushes for maximum restraint.

"To reiterate what you’ve already heard from the President, from other senior officials of the government: We want the objectives of this campaign — the elimination of Hamas as a governing, as a threatening force in Gaza and the threat to Israel. And — but how the campaign is conducted, particularly in the south is exceedingly important, because of the fragile situation with this very significant internal displacement already occurred on the ground," the official stated.

"The President has also consistently stressed the importance of ensuring military operations are conducted in a manner consistent with international humanitarian law, including with respect to the protection of civilians," the official added.

Another official stated that the administration was "delighted" that the four-day ceasefire reached last week was extended by two days.

One official said: "On the American hostages, of course, we work tirelessly every day. The President has been on the phone with — with key leaders in the region to push for the release of American hostages. We, of course, wish that all of our hostages had been released already."

The official added: "We are very hopeful that we will be able to get those American hostages out in that period.