UK seeks no assurances from Israel over use of British arms in killing of Palestinians
Mark Curtis, the Middle East Eye journalist and historian, has taken to social media to highlight three major issues with the support that the UK government is currently giving the Israeli state, each of which demonstrate the UK’s “complicity” with a country facing numerous accusations of human rights abuses.
New information from parliament on UK support for Israel, none of which likely to appear in UK ‘mainstream’ media due to the de facto media blackout on critical reporting of this special relationship. See next 5 tweets— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
The first is that the British government has not sought assurances from Israel regarding the use of arms exported from the UK against Palestinians in Gaza. On this issue, Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt told parliament that “we have not raised this issue with the Israeli authorities, we continue to assess export license applications on a case-by-case basis.”
1/UK has made no representations or sought assurances from Israel about UK arms to kill Palestinians. Would be most basic thing to do given any concern about Palestinian lives. The UK is totally supporting Israel, whatever it does. https://t.co/s2lwCxDPZXpic.twitter.com/N2XbXyxN0r— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
The second issue, Curtis suggests, exposes the UK’s complicity in the ongoing blockade of Gaza through the British Navy’s collaboration with Israel’s Navy. Defense Minister Mark Lancaster has confirmed that “Royal Navy ships have conducted port visits to Israel on five occasions since January 2016,” where they have “conducted routine defense engagement activities and small tactical exercises with [the] Israeli Defense Forces.”
2/ This is new info on extent of UK naval collaboration with the Israel Navy which enforces the illegal blockade of Gaza. This further shows UK complicity in the giant crime that is the Gaza blockade. There is nothing about this in the corporate media. https://t.co/5NLrP81UN8pic.twitter.com/8xbHfaxOMH— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
It’s been detailed that Britain has sold an array of military equipment that has been used by the Israeli Navy, including military guidance or navigation equipment, components for weapon control, and electronic warfare equipment.
3/ UK is exporting various military equipment to the Israeli Navy which is enforcing the illegal Gaza blockade. UK is strongly supporting the Israeli war machine and there is basically a media blackout on this in the UK, as far as I can see. https://t.co/IYbC2K67zBpic.twitter.com/CGhiJuIHGJ— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
Burt conceded that his government had not even conducted an assessment into Britain’s role in the blockade of Gaza, adding “we continue to call on the government of Israel to ease movement and access restrictions into and out of Gaza.”
4/ What assessment has the UK govt made of the role of the Israeli navy – with which it regularly collaborates – in the illegal blockade of Gaza?— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
The third issue highlighted by Curtis is the British government’s call for Israel to essentially investigate itself in relation to the recent deaths of Palestinian protesters in Gaza as a result of military action by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
5/British govt is calling on Israel itself to investigate its own killings in Gaza (just as it supports Saudi 'investigating' its own massacres in Yemen). The message from London is clear: If you’re our ally, you can kill with impunity. https://t.co/h5AVusjdoepic.twitter.com/RdGUPdmCUK— Mark Curtis (@markcurtis30) June 12, 2018
The UK government abstained from a UN Human Rights Council vote for a commission of inquiry into Israel’s killing of unarmed Palestinians in Gaza, preferring for Israel to conduct an inquiry into the killings during the Palestinians’ ‘Great March of Return’ protest.
Since March 30, more than 120 Palestinian protesters have died and 3,800 have been wounded by the Israeli military, according to Gaza health officials.
Omar Baggili, RT Journalist
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