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UK lawmakers voice support for Palestine on Lobby Day at UK Parliament

Nov. 28, 2018, midnight

A number of high-profile UK lawmakers voiced support for Palestinian rights during a lobbying day at the British Parliament.

H.E Ambassador Husam Zomlot spoke at the Lobby Day event, which was organised by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC).

The event was attended by advocacy groups and members of British civil society and the public.

Labour MP Emily Thornberry reiterated the call by Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn to recognise Palestine. She added that the UK should take a more active role in the quest for finding a solution to the question of Palestine.

Thornberry also showed her support for organising an international conference to discuss the question of Palestine. Further, she went on to say that her party is going on to push for the UK to use its position as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council to hold Israel to account.

Scottish National Party (SNP) MP Brendan O’Hara gave a moving personal account of his recent trip to Palestine, specifically the village of Abu Nawar. O’Hara spoke about the importance of sharing experiences of trips to Palestine and bearing witness to the unjust treatment of Palestinians.

Green Party MP Caroline Lucas voiced her solidarity with the people of Palestine. Speaking about the recent Israeli attacks on Gaza, Lucas mentioned one case of a young boy who was injured and was sent to a hospital outside of Gaza while his mother was denied a permission to leave the Gaza Strip with him. Lucas was contacted by a member of her constituency with regards to this case who urged her to use her capacity as an MP to put pressure on the Foreign Office to help obtain a permit for the child’s mother. The mother was later granted a permit to visit her son in hospital.

Ryvka Barnard from War on Want noted that since 2014, the UK Government exported weapons to Israel at a total value of £500 million pounds. She added that there is a UK policy to not sell weapons to countries where they might be used to commit human rights violations. However, she went on to say, this policy is not monitored closely enough or implemented effectively.

The Lobby Day is organized by PSC in order to lobby their MPs on Palestinian human rights issues, with a focus on the issues of child prisoners and the UK’s arming of Israel. Overall, 3,000 people contacted a total of 600 MPs, which is 92% of the total British Parliament.

The Lobby Day brought together all those passionate about pushing for justice for the Palestinian people. The event highlighted the continued commitment to achieving the collective historical right of the Palestinians to justice and freedom.

Image credit: Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

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