Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Alistair Burt (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Afghanistan/South Asia, counter terrorism/proliferation, North America, Middle East and North Africa), Foreign and Commonwealth Office; North East Bedfordshire, Conservative)
The Government places a high priority on the right to freedom of religion for all.
The UK is not aware of specific legal restrictions placed upon Christians in Gaza or the west bank to practise their religion. However, we remain deeply concerned about restrictions on freedom of movement. Palestinian Christian communities are primarily concentrated in Bethlehem, Ramallah and East Jerusalem. Travel by Palestinians between these places remains very difficult due to Israeli restrictions on freedom of movement. Palestinian Christians may also, like Palestinians of other faiths, face other restrictions as a result of the policies of the respective authorities exercising control over the occupied Palestinian Territories.
The Government regularly discusses these issues with religious leaders of all faiths, and with the relevant authorities, including raising specific cases as appropriate and discussing ways of protecting holy sites across the occupied Palestinian Territories.