German Chancellor Olaf Scholz arrived in Israel on Sunday for his second visit since the war between Israel and Hamas began in October.

The Chancellor met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, after which the two addressed the press.

"160 days,160 days that over 100 Israeli citizens are still in the hands of Hamas. 160 days of suffering for them and unbearable uncertainty for their families and friends. They are in our thoughts and prayers just as the memory of 1,200 who were brutally murdered on October 7th. We will not forget them. Blessed be their memory," the German leader opened.

"In these dark hours, my country stands with the people of Israel. From day one, our message has been clear: Israel has the right to defend itself against the terror of Hamas and all hostages have to be released. This cruel crime must end now," he declared.

With this, Scholz added: "Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip has now been going on for about five months and large parts of Hamas' military infrastructure have been destroyed. During these five months, the cost of human lives and the number of civilian casualties have grown to be extremely high; many would argue much too high.

"As a partner and as a friend of Israel, I have shared my concerns about the development of this war with the Prime Minister. By fighting Hamas terrorists Israel is pursuing a legitimate goal. Never again an October 7th. The longer the war lasts the higher the civilian casualties rise, the more desperate the situation in Gaza becomes, and the more this begs the question - no matter how important the goal, can it justify such terribly high costs or are there other ways to achieve the goal?"

Using Rafah as an example, Scholz stated: "The military logic is one consideration, but there is a humanitarian logic as well. How should more than 1.5 million people be protected? Where should they go?"

Regarding humanitarian aid to Gaza, the Chancellor urged: "We can not stand by and watch Palestinians risk starvation. That's not us, that is not what we stand for. Much more humanitarian aid is needed."

Scholz called for a hostage deal with a longer-lasting ceasefire. "I know how difficult it is to reach a deal with the Hamas terrorists, but we understand the hostage families who say after more than five months, the time has come for a comprehensive hostage deal to save those who are still held captive."