Canada is worried about what will happen in Gaza, Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said on Wednesday, citing dire humanitarian conditions ahead of a potential Israeli ground assault against Hamas.
Joly’s comments were among the clearest expressions of concern made so far by a major western nation about the impact of an assault. White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, pressed about Israel’s response, on Tuesday said “I’m not here to draw red lines”.
Joly also said three Canadians had died and Ottawa has reports that three more are missing.
“The humanitarian situation in Gaza was dire before this weekend, and this will only deteriorate the situation further … this will get worse before it gets better,” Joly told reporters.
“My heart breaks for the deaths we have seen. And I share the anxiety about what will happen next,” she continued, calling for a humanitarian corridor into the enclave, which Israel has sealed off.
Canada is urging all parties to respect international humanitarian law and grant access and will continue to support the humanitarian needs of Palestinian civilians, Joly said.
“This is the longstanding position of Canada when it comes to any form of conflict, so we just continue to abide by this approach,” she said.