WASHINGTON: William J. Burns, the C.I.A. director, arrived in Israel on Sunday for discussions with leaders and intelligence officials, the first stop in a multicountry trip in the region, according to U.S. officials.

According to US media, the visit comes as the United States is trying to prod Israel to pursue a more targeted approach to attacking Hamas, allow pauses in the fighting for aid to enter Gaza and do more to avoid civilian casualties.

A U.S. official briefed on Burns’s trip said he planned to reinforce the American commitment to intelligence cooperation with partners in the region.

Burns will travel to several Middle Eastern countries for discussions about the situation in Gaza, ongoing hostage negotiations and the importance of deterring the war with Hamas from widening to a broader context, the U.S. official said.

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