(Reuters) – BEIJING – Muslim ministers called for a quick ceasefire in Gaza on Monday, as their team visited Beijing on the first part of a tour to press for an end to hostilities and the entry of humanitarian supplies into the devastated Palestinian enclave.
The team, which is scheduled to speak with officials from each of the UN Security Council’s five permanent members, is also putting pressure on the West to reject Israel’s rationale for its actions against Palestinians as self-defense.
Officials from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt, Indonesia, Palestine, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation are among those meeting with China’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, on Monday.
“We are here to send a clear signal: that we must immediately stop the fighting and killings, and that we must immediately deliver humanitarian supplies to Gaza,” Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud stated.
This month’s unusual joint meeting in Riyadh also asked the International Criminal Court to probe “war crimes and crimes against humanity that Israel is committing” in Palestinian territory.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler, assembled Arab and Muslim leaders to underscore that message.
Approximately 240 captives were captured during Hamas’s deadly cross-border assault into Israel on Oct. 7, prompting Israel to invade Gaza with the goal of destroying the Islamist terrorist group.
According to Gaza’s Hamas-run government, at least 13,000 Palestinians have died as a result of Israeli bombings since then, including at least 5,500 children.