British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Saturday pledged Royal Navy help in stopping weapons being smuggled into the Gaza Strip, in a bid to break the deadlock on securing a ceasefire.
Brown said that following discussions in the last few days with leaders from Israel, the Palestinian Authority, France and Germany, he believed "the basis for a ceasefire" between Israel and the Islamist movement Hamas was now in place.
"We are prepared to provide British naval support to stop arms trafficking," he told reporters.
"We will do everything that we can to prevent the arms trafficking that is at the root of some of the problems that have caused the conflict.
"Britain is prepared to give naval resources so that we can monitor and stop arms traffic and arms getting into Gaza. I believe that will help get a solution to this crisis.
"We are prepared to do anything we can to help also with the crossings to make sure that there is proper protection and therefore proper monitoring as well."
He added: "Other countries are agreeing also that they will provide the support that is necessary to stop arms getting into Gaza.
"At the same time, we're prepared to provide European support for monitoring at the crossings."