Thank you for taking the time to contact me about the recent events in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs).
I am concerned about the violence we have witnessed in recent weeks. My thoughts are with all those affected, especially the families of those civilians killed.
The UK was clear from the outset in urging all parties to de-escalate. I welcome the announced ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, effective as of 21 May. This is an essential step to ending the cycle of violence and loss of civilian life.
Going forward, Hamas must end its attacks on Israel. It is also important for Israel to facilitate rapid humanitarian access in and out of Gaza. Likewise, Hamas must cease mortar attacks on these crossings. I welcome the announcement on 20 May that the UK will provide an initial £3.2 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in response to their flash appeal. This will help UNRWA deliver life-saving humanitarian aid to those that need it most.
All sides must now work together to consolidate the ceasefire and to find a durable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which will end the cycle of violence and deliver a sustainable and just peace. I am assured that the UK will do all it can to support efforts to this end.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.