Arab-Islamic committee seek Canada's support for Gaza ceasefire

Foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, Palestine and Turkey hold talks with Canadian PM in Ottawa

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al Maliki, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan and Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan met Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Minister Melanie Joly in Ottawa to seek support for a ceasefire in Gaza. Photo: @OIC_OCI / X
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Members of an Arab-Islamic committee led by Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan met Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Ottawa and Foreign Minister Melanie Joly on Saturday to build up support for a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza.

The meeting came a day after the US vetoed an Arab-drafted UN Security Council resolution. The resolution called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire to alleviate the suffering of civilians in Gaza, where the majority of the population has been displaced by an Israeli bombing campaign that has devastated much of the Palestinian enclave.

More than 17,700 people have been killed, mostly civilians, since Israel launched the military offensive in retaliation for Hamas attacks on October 7 that killed about 1,200 people in southern Israel, also mostly civilians.

Prince Faisal, along with Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki and Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan, discussed the developments in the war with Mr Trudeau and Ms Joly and the need for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation said in a post on X.

They also stressed the importance of creating political conditions for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in accordance with the relevant international resolutions, it said.

The committee called for urgent steps to be taken to ensure the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza, where food, water, fuel and other essentials have become scarce after Israel imposed a complete blockade of the territory in tandem with its military operation.

The delegation's trip to Ottawa followed visits to China, France, Spain, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, where they held talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken after the UN vote on Friday.

Updated: December 10, 2023, 11:51 PM