WEDNESDAY 17 DECEMBER 2014
- Questions to the DfID Secretary:
– Richard Burden: What recent assessment has DfID Secretary made of the humanitarian situation in Gaza?
– Desmond Swayne: Given that unemployment is at over 40%, nearly 60% of people have no secure access to food and three quarters have no access to safe water, 19,000 people still reside in United Nations Relief and Works Agency shelters, and 100,000 have been rendered homeless, the situation is dire.
– Richard Burden: Am I right in thinking that in October the Minister at the donor conference said that a return to the status quo in Gaza was not an option? According to the latest Oxfam report, however, the number of truck-loads going in with essential materials to do the rebuilding he talks about is now less after the summer’s conflict than before. Is Israel in breach of UN resolution 1860 on Gaza access, and if so what will the Government do about it?
– Desmond Swayne: The Gaza reconstruction mechanism, in which we have invested heavily, had a faltering start and only 46 truck-loads were delivered in October. We are now up to 302 as of the beginning of this month. It is not good enough, and we are working for more, but it is the only game in town.
– Andrew Percy: The situation in Gaza is of course made more dire by the actions of Hamas, which misappropriates hundreds of thousands of tonnes of concrete and uses it to construct 32 terror and murder tunnels. Can the Minister tell me what he is doing to ensure that Hamas does not similarly misappropriate aid that should be going towards ordinary Gazans?
– Desmond Swayne: We contributed £500,000 to the implementation of the mechanism, and the Australians have paid for the software, in order to ensure, by agreement with the Israeli Government, the Palestinian Authority and the UN, that no building materials would be misappropriated.
Commons Oral Answers
- Grahame M. Morris: Will Foreign Secretary support proposals in the EU to take action against the Israeli government if it does not rescind the appropriation of 990 acres in Gush Etzion in the West Bank?
- Guto Bebb: Does DfID provide financial assistance to Al-Quds University in the West Bank?
Nos 2-3 Commons Written Answers
- Baroness Tonge: Further to the Written Answer by Lord Livingston of Parkhead on 18 August on British military exports to Israel, will HMG clarify the uses of components for combat aircraft, drones, targeting equipment, military radar, weapon night sights, anti-armour ammunition, sniper rifles and high powered radio frequency weapons systems, and whether those components constitute a particular weapon or system being used for internal repression or external aggression as specified in the Export Control Act 2002?
- Baroness Tonge: Further to the Written Answer by Baroness Anelay of St Johns on 4 December, what is HMG’s assessment of the use of live fire for crowd control?
- Baroness Tonge: What representations have HMG made to the government of Israel concerning reports of IDF soldiers and jeeps entering a school in the West Bank village of Al-Sawiyah, and preventing students from entering, on 3 December?
- Baroness Tonge: Further to the Written Answer by Baroness Anelay of St Johns on 17 November, do HMG plan to encourage international prosecution of settlement building as being a war crime according to the Rome Statute, in order to make possible a viable Palestinian state?
- Lord Ahmed: Will HMG propose that the EU freezes the assets of organisations supporting Israeli settlements, including Israeli banks providing mortgages on settlement properties or loans to settler regional councils?
- Baroness Tonge: What discussions have HMG had with other European countries concerning the harvesting and ownership of Gaza’s gas fields?
- Baroness Tonge: How much money do HMG estimate could be saved from the aid budget during the next five years by making Israel bear the costs of occupation and reconstruction in Gaza and the West Bank?
- Baroness Tonge: Further to the Written Answer by Baroness Northover on 1 December, have Palestinian farmers received compensation for their loss of fruit trees, and if so, from whom?
- Baroness Tonge: What progress has been made in the recent UN efforts to remove rubble in Gaza?
Nos 4-12 Lords Written Answers
TUESDAY 16 DECEMBER 2014
- Pete Wishart [edited extract from his speech in “Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill” debate]: “People are not born genetically programmed to become jihadists and terrorists: something fundamental and significant happens during their journey that influences them and makes them get involved. We fail to understand that. We also fail to take responsibility for what we may have done in setting the external stimuli in this regard […………] we can see the line going all the way back to when it started. Yes, there were issues before Iraq and before some of the other difficulties in the middle east, particularly in relation to Palestine…..”
- Treasury Statement on Counter-terrorist Asset Freezing Regime – The following groups and entities are included:
Hamas, including Hamas-Izz al-Din al-Qassem
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine —General Command (PFLP-GC)
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP)
Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ)
Commons Written Statements
- Lord Warner: Why does the UK have a visa waiver agreement with Israel when the United States does not?
- Lord Warner: In the light of the admission into the UK to speak publicly of Professor Mordechai Kedar of Bar-Ilan University in Israel , and his reported remarks that the sisters and mothers of terrorists should be raped as a deterrent, do HMG intend to reconsider the retention of the visa waiver agreement with Israel?
- Lord Warner: Does the visa waiver agreement with Israel permit individuals undertaking, permitting or financing illegal settlements in the OPTs to travel freely between Israel and the UK?
- Baroness Tonge: What assessment have HMG made of the Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s recent suggestion that Israel should offer economic incentives to encourage the transfer of Israeli Arabs to a Palestinian state?
- Baroness Tonge: Further to the Written Answer by Baroness Anelay of St Johns on 21 November, what representations will HMG make to the government of Israel to hold a full and transparent investigation into the death of Youssef al Ramouni?
- Baroness Tonge: What action are HMG taking to discourage incitement to violence and to promote religious tolerance in Jerusalem?
- Baroness Tonge: Was any attempt made to prevent Professor Mordechai Kedar from entering the UK in order to speak to the Zionist Federation and Sussex Friends of Israel in Brighton on 8 December, in the light of his reported comments in respect of raping the wives and mothers of Hamas militants?
- Baroness Tonge: What representations have HMG made to Israel concerning the United Nations report on the number of patients in Gaza waiting to leave for critical treatment; and what progress has the European Union made in respect of ending the blockade?
- Baroness Tonge: What action are HMG taking to encourage the Geneva Convention summit to discuss the situation in Palestine and human rights?
Nos 3-11 Lords Written Answers
MONDAY 15 DECEMBER 2014
- In answer to Lord Laird’s enquiry about DfID’s £90 million grant to BBC Media Action, Baroness Northover lists the OPTs among the countries where the project spent £53.3 million from November 2011 to November 2014, adding: “BBC Media Action’s priority for the global grant continues to be supporting media outputs that contribute to better governance, healthier populations and an increased ability to cope with crises.”
- Baroness Tonge: What assessment have HMG made of the humanitarian situation in Gaza following the recent floods; and what discussions have they had with Israel about beginning reconstruction?
Nos 1-2 Lords Written Answers