RISHI Sunak has said Benjamin Netanyahu “needs to do more” to alleviate suffering in Gaza as he was confronted over the UK’s decision not to suspend arms exports to Israel.

The Prime Minister insisted the Government has an “obligation” to follow legal advice which he said has left the UK’s position on export licences unchanged.

However, he backed calls from US president Joe Biden for a six-to-eight week ceasefire a day after Foreign Secretary David Cameron said the UK would continue to allow arms sales, prompting criticism from aid organisations and charities.

During his appearance on LBC, Sunak was asked by one caller why he wouldn’t stop selling arms to Israel, particularly after the death of three British nationals in an airstrike on a World Central Kitchen convoy.

Sunak replied: “It was a shocking tragedy what happened to our veterans when they were doing you know, selflessly, carrying out aid missions into Gaza.

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“And, you know, I have also said repeatedly the situation in Gaza is increasingly intolerable. The humanitarian suffering that people are experiencing isn’t right and prime minister Netanyahu needs to do more to alleviate. I made that very clear to him.”

Pressed by host Nick Ferrari on why the UK continues to send weapons to Israel, Sunak replied: “So we have a long established process which actually the Foreign Secretary David Cameron was talking about in detail yesterday.

“And we review these things regularly according to a very clear process. That happens periodically as it has happened recently and that’s led to no change.

“And actually none of our closest allies have currently suspended existing arms licences either so we continue to discuss these things with our allies.

“But what I would say is and I’ve said consistently is that the humanitarian situation is dire. We, you know, I hope everyone is proud of what we’re doing to help alleviate that.”

Ministers have so far resisted calls to publish the assessments they receive of whether Israel’s military action in Gaza is in line with humanitarian law but say they are acting in accordance with them.

The National: Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu chaired a meeting of his cabinet on Sunday (Ohad Zwigenberg/AP)

Cameron’s announcement on Tuesday came as Netanyahu (above) escalated his threats to carry out a ground invasion in Rafah, saying a date had been set for the operation.

Around 1.4 million Palestinians are currently living in the city in southern Gaza, many of whom have been displaced from other parts of the enclave, and Western countries including the US have opposed the move.

Asked whether he agrees with Biden’s calls for a six-to-eight week ceasefire, Sunak said: “Yes, we’ve been very aligned on this.

“And I’ve said consistently in Parliament and publicly that what we want to see is an immediate humanitarian pause, so that we can get the hostages out, and it’s critical to remember that Hamas is still holding hostages including Brits.

“We want to get the hostages released unconditionally, we want to get aid in to help alleviate the suffering, and then use that as a platform to build a sustainable ceasefire.”