Middle East Minister: Palestinian Authority must do more to tackle incitement

By May 25 2016, 10:42 Latest News No Comments

tobias ellwoodMinister for the Middle East Tobias Ellwood MP condemned Palestinian incitement in Parliament this week and said that he has urged the Palestinian Authority to do more to tackle it.

The Minister’s comments came during FCO oral parliamentary questions in response to a question from Conservative MP Craig Tracey.

The MP for North Warwickshire asked the Foreign Secretary “what recent assessment he has made of the extent of radicalisation in the Palestinian Territories”.

Minister Ellwood condemned “all violence and all efforts to incite or radicalise people to commit violence in the Middle East”.

He said that during a recent visit to the Palestinian Territories, he “raised this issue with the Palestinian Authority and urged them to do more to tackle this issue and make clear their opposition to violence”.

Mr Tracey referred to the latest example of Palestinian incitement; a Facebook post on the official page of Palestinian President Abbas’ Fatah party that described a terrorist “who killed 26 people and wounded more than 80 in a shooting attack at Israel’s main airport in 1972 as a ‘hero’ and said it was ‘proud of every fighter who has joined our mighty revolution against Israel’”.

He continued: “Does the Minister agree that the success of the two-state solution that we all want rests upon the Palestinian Authority starting to teach its young people about peaceful coexistence?”

Minister Ellwood underlined the importance of Mr Tracey’s point about peaceful coexistence, and went on to state that this Facebook post “should be condemned and removed”, and that President Abbas must “condemn statements such as that when they are made”.

The Minister said that he has “noticed a disjunct between the elderly leadership and the youth, who feel disfranchised and so are taking matters into their own hands”, referring to the wave of violent attacks – the majority carried out by young Palestinians – that have left 30 Israelis and four foreign nationals dead and over 450 injured in the last nine months.

Later in Foreign Office questions, Minister Ellwood expressed his concern about Hamas’s “attempts to rearm and rebuild tunnel infrastructure” in the Gaza Strip, which he believes “undermine efforts to improve the situation in Gaza and harm prospects for the Middle East peace process”.

He emphasised: “Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza must permanently end rocket fire and other attacks against Israel”, and went on to state that he has sought to “place pressure” on Hamas to this end.

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