In International Development Questions this week, Conservative MPs raised concerns about UK taxpayer money going to Palestinian prisoners convicted of terror offenses, and Palestinian schools named after terrorists.
MP for Harlow, Rt. Hon. Robert Halfon, asked: “British taxpayers can be proud that their money goes to the salaries of Palestinian teachers, but does the Secretary of State share my obvious concern that some of those teachers are working at one of the more than 30 Palestinian Authority schools named after terrorists who have murdered Israelis or at one of the three named after Nazi collaborators?”
In response, Middle East Minister, Rt. Hon. Alistair Burt MP said: “As the House knows, we constantly challenge the Palestinian Authority in relation to anything that might encourage or glorify violence”.
He emphasised: “We do all we can to encourage the Authority to understand that naming places after those who have been involved in terrorism does not contribute to the peace process”.
CFI Vice-Chairman, Rt. Hon. Theresa Villiers MP asked: “what action is the Minister taking to ensure that no taxpayers’ money from DFID ever ends up in the pockets of convicted terrorists?”
CFI Officer Bob Blackman MP asked what the Government was doing so support peaceful coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians. He asked: “What action is my right hon. Friend taking to ensure that the funds given to the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli non-governmental organisations are used to promote peace in the area, so that we can see a peaceful co-existence?”
Minister Burt responded stating that: “We have just this year allocated £3 million to co-existence projects so that those from the Palestinian community and Israelis can work more effectively together”. He underlined: “One of the problems in recent years has been a growing divide between communities. We want to find projects that will break down barriers rather than erect them”.
Click here to read the transcript in full.