Downing Street has said there is no difference between the UK and US positions on the Gaza war following American Vice President Kamala Harris’s call for an immediate ceasefire.

Britain is “entirely aligned” with Washington in wishing to see a pause in the fighting as soon as possible, Number 10 said on Monday.

In some of the strongest words yet from a senior member of US government on the crisis, Ms Harris said that, given the “immense scale of suffering” in Gaza, there must be “an immediate ceasefire for at least the next six weeks”.

She called for Israel to do more to significantly increase the flow of aid into the territory.

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US Vice President Kamala Harris has called for an immediate ceasefire in the Israel-Gaza war (Leon Neal/PA)

Asked about the comments, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s official spokesman said: “We agree that we want to see a sustained humanitarian pause agreed as quickly as possible to allow the safe release of hostages and a significant increase in aid to Gaza.”

He added: “Our position is entirely aligned with the US who, like us, are calling for a pause in the fighting. We have been clear, as has the US, that the right conditions, however, must be in place for a permanent lasting ceasefire, and that includes the release of all hostages, Hamas no longer in charge in Gaza, and a bolstered Palestinian Authority.”

In response to suggestions the US position has changed, he said: “A temporary ceasefire and a humanitarian pause are the same thing, we’re talking about the same position. The US and the UK have been entirely aligned on this.”

He added that the UK would “certainly support” a six-week pause in the fighting “if that is what parties can agree on”.

The UK Government has resisted calls to back an immediate ceasefire and previously abstained on UN resolutions demanding one.

After Parliament descended into chaos earlier this month over the Commons Speaker’s handling of an opposition day motion on the conflict, the SNP has urged the Prime Minister to change Britain’s stance in any forthcoming votes.

Mr Sunak told MPs last week: “We support the United States’ draft resolution that was discussed with colleagues at the United Nations last week, but just calling for an immediate full ceasefire now which collapses back into fighting within days or weeks, and indeed does not release hostages including British hostages, is not in anyone’s interest.

“We must work towards a permanent ceasefire and that starts with an immediate humanitarian pause to get aid in and hostages out.”