7 May 2024
Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown calls for more aid access to Gaza

Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown calls on the Government to appeal to Israel to allow more aid into Gaza.

He said:

"I continue to be considerably concerned about the tragedy that is unfolding in the Middle East. Israel is our friend and ally, but that does not stop us from questioning its actions. Palestinian civilians are facing a devastating and growing humanitarian crisis in Gaza and the lack of news on progress in supplying them with humanitarian aid is worrying as the situation develops this week. I took the chance to raise my concerns yesterday with the Deputy Foreign Secretary as he updated the House on the latest Government response in Gaza. Over the weekend we saw in the news miles-long queues of aid trucks trying to enter Gaza, aid support from the air and sea is even more difficult. So, I appealed to the Deputy Foreign Secretary to appeal to our allies to allow those aid trucks into Rafah as rapidly as possible to relieve the suffering of the people there."

Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown (The Cotswolds) (Con)

Israel is our friend and ally, but that does not stop us questioning its actions. My right hon. Friend the Deputy Foreign Secretary says that he wants to see much more aid getting into Gaza. The actions in Gaza over the weekend have only made those miles-long queues of lorries even greater. Air and sea drops are difficult. Will he today, on behalf of the Government, appeal to our allies to allow those in those miles-long queues in Rafah to rapidly go into Gaza and relieve the suffering of the people there?

The Deputy Foreign Secretary (Mr Andrew Mitchell)

We continually appeal for more aid getting in by road. We have made arrangements for maritime entry, and entry from the air, but getting aid in through entry points on the road system is, by miles, the best way. I said at the outset of my remarks that we were very concerned indeed about the fact that no aid got in through Rafah or Kerem Shalom yesterday. We are doing everything we can, as we have been since the start of this crisis, to ensure that more aid is getting in, and we will continue to do so.