Sir Eric called the petition “completely absurd” and stated that it “will have no impact upon the UK-Israel relationship which is stronger than ever and Prime Minister Netanyahu’s forthcoming visit will enhance it further”.
He added: “I welcome the Government’s unambiguous response which reiterates its support for Israel’s right to self-defence and condemnation of Hamas’s terrorist tactics”.
The Government this week responded to the petition, stating that under UK and international law, Heads of State, Heads of Government and Ministers for Foreign Affairs are entitled to immunity.
The Government statement underlined that the “Prime Minister was clear on the UK’s recognition of Israel’s right to take proportionate action to defend itself, within the boundaries of international humanitarian law”.
It further stated: “We condemn the terrorist tactics of Hamas who fired rockets on Israel, built extensive tunnels to kidnap and murder, and repeatedly refused to accept ceasefires. Israel, like any state, has the right to ensure its own security, as its citizens also have the right to live without fear of attack”.
Click here to view the Government’s full response.