Group of Seven (G7) foreign ministers on Wednesday voiced support for humanitarian pauses in Gaza to support aid deliveries, civilian movement and the release of hostages - but stopped short of calling for a ceasefire.
In a joint statement released following a meeting in Tokyo, the G7 ministers expressed support for Israel to defend itself in accordance with international law, condemned Hamas and called for the immediate release of all hostages held in the enclave.
It also called for action to relieve the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, where more than 10,000 people have been killed since Israel's siege began more than a month ago, according to figures from the Palestinian health authority in Ramallah, down from sources in the Hamas-controlled enclave.
"We stress the need for urgent action to address the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in Gaza", the G7 foreign ministers' statement said. "All parties must allow unimpeded humanitarian support for civilians, including food, water, medical care, fuel, shelter, and access for humanitarian workers. We support humanitarian pauses and 2 corridors to facilitate urgently needed assistance, civilian movement, and the release of hostages".
Their statement also said the G7 nations are committed to working with partners to prepare a sustainable long-term solutions for Gaza and return to a broader peace process that can lead to a two-state solution.
But the G7's rejection of a ceasefire puts the group at odds with its Arab counterparts and a growing number of international voices, as support for Israel's military campaign shows deepening erosion.