Washington’s unwavering support for Israel during its ground invasion of Gaza is coming under increasing scrutiny in the Global South.

China’s top diplomat Wang Yi recently hosted a delegation of foreign ministers from the Arab and Islamic world, including representatives from Saudi Arabia, the Palestinian Authority, Jordan, Egypt and Indonesia. Beijing said it is ready to work with these countries toward a cease-fire in Gaza, the release of hostages, the unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid and an "early, comprehensive, just and enduring settlement of the Palestinian question.”

This is not a new line from Beijing, but it will no doubt be welcomed by some in the Muslim world, particularly in Southeast Asia, which is keen to see more global leadership on an issue that has stoked outrage across communities. Tensions have been running high since Oct. 7, when Hamas militants surged across the border and killed 1,200 Israelis and foreign nationals and took as many as 240 hostage.