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Middle East: Armed Conflict

Volume 488: debated on Monday 2 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what occasions he has condemned (a) suicide and (b) other terrorist attacks in Israel; if he will place in the Library a copy of each such statement; and if he will make a statement. (242696)

We have consistently made clear that rocket attacks directed against Israeli civilians are utterly unacceptable. We led the work on UN Security Council Resolution 1860 which “condemns all violence and hostilities directed at civilians and all acts of terrorism”.

This has been our longstanding policy and over the last year we issued statements addressing both rocket attacks and suicide attacks.

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary said on 2 March 2008 “I condemn the rocket attacks against Israel”, and on 4 February 2009 “I utterly condemn this morning's suicide attack in Dimona”.

Further statements can be found on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website,

http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/newsroom/latest-news/statements/

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment his Department has made of whether any of the weaponry or component parts thereof being used by the Israeli Defence Forces in Gaza has been manufactured in the UK or exported by a UK-registered company (247806)

As my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary said in his statement to the House on 12 January 2009, Official Report, column 21:

“No arms exports are granted where there is a clear risk that those arms could be used for internal repression or external aggression, and that is surveyed very closely. Also, we have no evidence of any of the exports that he has pointed to being used in this operation.”—[Official Report, 12 January 2009; vol. 486, c.29.]

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the oral statement of 12 January 2009, Official Report, columns 21-38, on Gaza, what consideration he has given to referring the allegations made on the conduct of both sides to the International Criminal Court. (247882)

As my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary told the House on 19 January 2009, Official Report, column 504:

“allegations must be closely and speedily investigated. Obviously, the three key parties to that investigation are the United Nations, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Government of Israel, and we are in touch with all of them.”—[Official Report, 19 January 2009; vol. 486, c.504.]

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the report of the Strategic Foresight Group on the Cost of Conflict in the Middle East. (257510)

The report of the Strategic Foresight Group on the Cost of Conflict in the Middle East highlights many of the negative consequences of the conflict. The Government share these concerns and continue to believe that a just and lasting peace is in the interests of all parties. We will continue to work to achieve such a peace.