South of Scotland MSP Claudia Beamish is a Co-convenor of the Cross Party Group for Palestine in the Scottish Parliament and attended the demonstration outside the Parliament on Thursday 7th August. Ms Beamish has a long standing interest in the political and humanitarian situation in Gaza and regularly raises concerns in the Scottish Parliament.
In 2012 Ms Beamish visited the Gaza Strip as part of a European parliamentarians fact finding mission, organised by the Council for European Palestinian Relations and was able to witness first-hand the extraordinary challenges faced by ordinary Palestinians living under the Israeli blockade.
Claudia Beamish said: “It was important to attend the demonstration today outside the Scottish Parliament to help show the groundswell of support in Scotland for the people in Gaza. While it should be recognised that there has been Israeli loss of life in this conflict, the majority of these have been military personel. However, the Israeli attacks on Gaza have been disproportionate and the enormous loss of civilian lives is completely unacceptable. The destruction of a significant proportion of homes in Gaza is also a cause for grave concern. The bombing of UN places of refuge is being questioned as a possible war crime by the UN Secretary General, Ban-Ki Moon.
I am clear that we in Scotland and the UK, as part of the international community, must continue to add our voice to the opposition of the disproportionate actions of the Israeli Government and consider the possibility of an arms embargo of Israel.”
“I hope that this demonstration, and others throughout the world, will go some way to convincing the Israeli Government that their current actions are unacceptable and that a political solution which enables the people of Palestine to have a state of their own, whilst ensuring the security of Israel is the way forward.
Anyone wishing to contribute to the UK Gaza relief fund can do so by visiting the DEC website.”