Conservative Lords condemned Hamas’s violence and the damaging measures of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement during a debate in Parliament yesterday concerning the Palestinian Territories.
CFI Honorary President Lord Polak CBE spoke about the diversity of the SodaStream workforce which he saw during a CFI visit to its factory in Israel last week. He pointed out that “due to pressure mounted by the BDS campaign”, 800 Palestinians had lost their jobs, as the factory moved from its location in the West Bank to southern Israel.
Lord Polak also emphasised that there was now a “historic opportunity” where peace could be negotiated between moderate Sunni Arab states and Israel.
Lord Shinkwin in his speech said that those who accused Israel of using “excessive force”, did not fully consider the position that Israel was in. He underlined: “It is so much easier to criticise Israel from the safety of this Chamber rather than imagining ourselves as Israelis in one of the 28 communities living within five kilometres of the Gaza border fence”.
He stated: “I cannot accuse Israel of excessive fear. The Hamas terrorist regime hates Israel just for being. It is a hatred that we have never encountered”.
Lord Leigh pointed out in his speech that “there have been injustice all round” during the history of the conflict, stating that “less discussed is the 850,000 Jewish people who were forcibly expelled from their Arab homes—the Jewish nakba of people who had lived in their host countries peacefully for some 3,000 years”.
He added that the prospects for renewed peace negotiations did not look hopeful considering PA President Mahmoud Abbas’s antisemitic remarks during a speech in April.
Click here to read the transcripts of the speeches in full.