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Friday, 1 August 2014

The Lib Dem line on Israel/Palestine today

In a party that is, to paraphrase Charles Kennedy, not so much a broad church as a hexagonal cathedral, it is somewhat hazardous to refer to "the party line". That notwithstanding, the Liberal Democrats do (like any other party) have such an official line on issues of the day, and below is the one on "Israel and Palestine" today. Writing here in a personal capacity, I have to say that I strongly agree with the broad thrust of large parts of this:

"Our urgent priority is to stop the bloodshed, restore the ceasefire and work towards a long-term sustainable peace. The Liberal Democrats in Government will concentrate our efforts on securing that object.

"Israel has the right to defend itself against indiscriminate rocket attacks launched from Gaza and targeted at innocent Israelis.

"But we will continue to urge Israel to exercise restraint and make every effort to avoid further civilian casualties. It is vital we work towards an immediate ceasefire.

"We are deeply concerned by the continuing bloodshed in Gaza. It is tragic that so many innocent civilians, including children, have been killed and injured in the ongoing violence.

"The people of Gaza and Israel have the fundamental right to live in peace and security. To this end, we urge Hamas to stop their indiscriminate rocket attacks on Israel but also call on Israel and Egypt to lift the blockade of Gaza. It is not in Israel's or ordinary Palestinians' interests to see the humanitarian crisis in Gaza worsen."

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