G7 ministers express support for 'humanitarian pauses' in Israel-Gaza war

More than 10,500 Palestinians have been killed so far

Palestinians walk by a destroyed mosque following an Israeli air strike in Khan Younis. AP
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Foreign ministers from the Group of Seven nations expressed support for “humanitarian pauses” in the Israel-Gaza war that would allow aid to get into the besieged enclave and help hostages and foreign citizens to leave, as the conflict enters its second month.

The statement from the G7 foreign ministers comes amid growing calls for a ceasefire as the conflict continues to escalate.

“We stress the need for urgent action to address the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in Gaza,” the ministers said in the statement, which was released following a meeting in Japan.

“All parties must allow unimpeded humanitarian support for civilians, including food, water, medical care, fuel and shelter, and access for humanitarian workers.”

More than 10,500 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, according to the enclave’s Health Ministry, since Israel declared war following an attack by Hamas on October 7 in which militants killed more than 1,400 people and kidnapped about 240.

In the statement, top diplomats from Japan, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the UK and the US also expressed concern over settler violence in the occupied West Bank.

“The rise in extremist settler violence committed against Palestinians is unacceptable, undermines security in the West Bank and threatens prospects for a lasting peace,” the foreign ministers said.

Since October 7, the UN has recorded more than 170 instances of settler attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank. In some instances, whole communities have been forced to flee their homes.

In addition, the G7 members reiterated their support for a “two-state solution” to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

“The G7 members are committed to working closely with partners to prepare sustainable long-term solutions for Gaza and a return to a broader peace process in line with the internationally agreed parameters,” they said.

“We underscore that a two-state solution, which envisions Israel and a viable Palestinian state living side by side in peace, security and mutual recognition remains the only path to a just, lasting and secure peace.”

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Updated: November 08, 2023, 5:51 PM