China hosted senior officials from mostly Middle Eastern nations on Monday for “in-depth” talks on deescalating the Israel-Hamas conflict, as Beijing tries to bolster its credentials as a global peacemaker.

Top foreign policy officials from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority were among those who visited Beijing.

The delegation, led by Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan, aims to visit Russia and the other permanent members of the United Nations Security Council — France, the UK and the US — afterwards, according to Ahmed Aboul-Gheit, secretary-general of the Arab League.

The discussions in China were about “immediately stopping the military escalation” in Gaza and “delivering the necessary humanitarian aid to avoid the spread of the humanitarian catastrophe” there, according to Saudi state media.

The officials also reiterated calls for a two-state solution to achieve a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the international community must “take effective and credible measures to stop the tragedies from going any further” in Gaza.


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