Vote for Gaza

IssueJune - July 2024
‘Stop Arming Israel – Ceasefire Now!’ march in London, 27 April.Photo: PN
News by Milan Rai

In the general election campaign, every candidate for the Westminster parliament must be told that if they do not call for an immediate, permanent, ceasefire in Gaza, they will not receive your vote.

Out of all the crises and pressing issues in the world, the slaughter in Gaza must be the most urgent question of the British general election.

Both the Conservatives and Labour pretend to be calling for a ceasefire, but all they mean by that is a few weeks’ pause to get some aid in, before Israel is allowed to continue smashing Gaza into pieces – for months to come – with a steady supply of British weapons and spare parts.

Two recent polls show that 55 percent of people in Britain support ending or suspending arms sales to Israel (see here). According to the Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), Britain supplies 15 percent of the components in the F35 fighter jets being used to destroy Gaza, to take one example.

On 24 May, the world court ordered Israel to stop its assault on Rafah in the south of Gaza. Israeli is, at the time of writing, defying this legal order and continuing to bomb the hundreds of thousands of people still in Rafah.

The UN special rapporteur for human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, Francesca Albanese, responded to the continuing Israeli attacks by calling for sanctions.

She posted on Twitter/X: ‘Be sure: Israel will not stop this madness until WE make it stop. Member states must impose sanctions, arms embargo and suspend diplo/political relations with Israel till it ceases its assault’.

There will be a judicial review of British arms sales to Israel, in a case brought by Global Legal Action Network (GLAN) and the Palestinian human rights group, Al-Haq, but it won’t be until October. The case was dismissed in February, then revived by the high court on 23 April.


Two months earlier, on 26 March, Albanese had told the UN human rights council in Geneva: ‘There are reasonable grounds to believe that the threshold indicating the commission of the crime of genocide… has been met’ by Israeli policy in Gaza.

Albanese said Israel had carried out ‘three acts of genocide with the requisite intent: causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group, deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part, and imposing measures intended to prevent birth within the group.’

On 21 May, the chief prosecutor of the international criminal court, Karim Khan, formally applied for arrest warrants for Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the defence minister Yoav Gallant, for war crimes and crimes against humanity in this latest Gaza War. (Khan also asked for arrest warrants for three Hamas leaders for crimes committed during the 7 October attack and against Israeli hostages since then.)