LBC ‘Cross Questions’ Comments Back End to Cycle of Violence
Alyn Smith MP, SNP spokesperson for Europe and EU Accession, has called for a ceasefire on all sides in Gaza following harrowing developments in recent days.
Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip have killed thousands of Palestinians and damaged key infrastructure, as the United Nations and a range of countries across the globe back call for a ceasefire and respect of international humanitarian law.
Israel Defense Force moves are in response to an invasion by Hamas militants on 7th October 2023 into Israel, murdering an estimated 1,400 civilians and attacking military and law enforcement targets. In response, water and fuel supplies were shut off to Gaza, with Palestinian civilians instructed to evacuate the northern portion of the blockaded territory by Israeli authorities ahead of further military operations.
On LBC’s Cross Questions (Tuesday), Mr Smith called for a ceasefire and cool heads in the days ahead – underlining the complex nature of the conflict, the need for controlled language and empathy from the international community, and condemning the killing of civilians by all sides.
Afterwards, Alyn Smith MP said:
‘I grew up in Saudi Arabia – everything is connected to everything else and history didn’t start last week. There’s a lot of hurt on all sides – and the SNP’s starting point here is respecting international law. Events run the risk of spiralling into a wider regional conflict, pulling in neighbouring countries, and all efforts should be made to stop that cycle of destruction.
‘Innocents must be protected – and there has to be a ceasefire. The United States in particular is in a uniquely influential position to back a ceasefire and prevent further loss of innocent lives, including thousands of children.
‘Israel has the right to defend itself and live in peace and security – but it is Hamas to blame for the atrocities of October 7th, not the Palestinian people at large and certainly not the men, women and children in Gaza. Collective punishment cannot be the answer, and will bring neither justice nor peace to the region.
‘The Scottish Government has pledged a £500,000 aid package to assist the UN set up a humanitarian corridor. The focus of the UK Government and the international community should be on ensuring the immediate delivery of that aid to Gazans on the ground who are waiting for food, water, medical supplies and energy.
‘But the first step towards a sustainable peace is to stop the airstrikes, the killing and the violence – on all sides.’
The full interview can be found here.