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Middle East

Volume 470: debated on Tuesday 8 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what account he takes of the need to ensure the security of Israel and its people and to reduce hardship among Palestinians in his middle east policy. (175906)

We understand Israel's security dilemma and recognise Israel's right to self-defence. However, Israeli actions must be consistent with international law and not cause suffering to innocent civilians.

In 2007, the UK gave £31 million in aid to the Palestinians and recently committed up to US$500 million over three years. Palestinian hardship and Israeli security can best be tackled through a political process that creates an economically and socially viable Palestinian state at peace with Israel.