Israel: Palestinians

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 17th September 2020.

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Photo of Rushanara Ali Rushanara Ali Labour, Bethnal Green and Bow

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, with reference to the report to the UN Human Rights Council of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, dated 15 July 2020, what representations he has made to the Government of Israel on ending all measures amounting to collective punishment of Palestinians including the closure of Gaza.

Photo of James Cleverly James Cleverly Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

We have serious concerns about the use of punitive acts against the families of Palestinians who have been accused of violent acts by Israel, including Israel's policy of demolitions to destroy the homes belonging to suspected Palestinian terrorists or their families. Such punishments, in all but the most exceptional of cases, are contrary to international humanitarian law. Officials from our Embassy in Tel Aviv have registered concerns about this policy with Israeli authorities. The UK also remains deeply concerned about the situation in Gaza. We continue to stress to the Israeli authorities the damage that their restrictions are doing to the economy and to the living standards of ordinary Palestinians in Gaza. There remains an urgent need for all parties to reach an agreement that addresses the underlying causes of the conflict in Gaza.

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