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Iran and Israel appear to pull back from border clashes after US approves military aid to Jerusalem | India bloomers

Iran and Israel have decided to back away from a wider conflict after lawmakers in the United States approved new Israeli military aid on Saturday, despite growing criticism of their ally over the ongoing war in Gaza, media reports said.

Iran downplayed Israel’s reported retaliation for its unprecedented drone and missile strike, allaying fears that escalating attacks between the arch-enemies could result in a wider war in the Middle East.

However, a deadly explosion at an Iraqi military base underlined the ongoing tensions in the region.

To strengthen Israel’s armed forces, including the Iron Dome air defense system, the US House of Representatives has approved $13 billion in new military aid to the country.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the aid bill, writing on X, formerly Twitter, that it “demonstrates strong bipartisan support for Israel and defense of Western civilization.”

However, the move was criticized by the Palestinian presidency, which condemned it as “an aggression against the Palestinian people” and a “dangerous escalation”.

The money would “translate into thousands of Palestinian victims in the Gaza Strip” and the West Bank, said Nabil Abu Rudeina, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas.

On Friday, Israel launched a missile attack on Iran, after which Tehran claimed to have activated its air defense system and shot down several drones.

Israel launched an attack on Iran in retaliation for last weekend’s attack.

Iran had activated its air defense system over several cities, state media reported, shortly after the country’s official broadcaster said explosions were heard near Isfahan, Iran’s third-largest city.