The Foreign Secretary called for Israel to ‘stop and think seriously’ – while US President Joe Biden allegedly called the country’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu an ‘a**hole’ three times
David Cameron says the UK is “very concerned” about the situation in the southern Gaza city of Rafah after Israel launched an invasion.
The Foreign Secretary has called for Israel to “stop and think seriously” before taking further action. He said “it’s impossible to see how you can fight a war amongst” the civilians in Gaza, adding: “There’s nowhere for them to go.”
“We want Israel to stop and think very seriously before it takes any further action,” said Lord Cameron. “Above all, what we want is an immediate pause in the fighting – we want that pause to lead to a ceasefire, a sustainable ceasefire without a return to further fighting. That is what should happen now.
“We need to get those hostages out, including the British nationals. We need to get the aid in. The best way to do that is to stop the fighting now and turn that into a permanent, sustainable ceasefire.”
Speaking to reporters in East Kilbride, Scotland, Lord Cameron added: “We are very concerned about what is happening in Rafah, because let’s be clear the people there, many of who have moved four, five, six times before getting there. It really, we think, is impossible to see how you can fight a war amongst these people, there is nowhere for them to go. They can’t go south into Egypt, they can’t go north and back to their homes because many have been destroyed.”
Rafah, which is on the border with Egypt, was one of the only regions not yet targeted by Israel’s ground offensive. It was providing refuge to more than half of Gaza’s 2.3million population who have fled fighting elsewhere. The Israeli military targeted the region in a dramatic operation early Monday, rescuing two Israeli hostages and killing at least 67 Palestinians in airstrikes, according to Palestinian hospital officials.
On Sunday, the White House said Joe Biden had warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Israel should not conduct a military operation against Hamas in Rafah without a “credible and executable” plan to protect civilians. According to NBC, the US President has been privately voicing his frustration, including having called Mr Netanyahu an “a**hole” three times recently, according to three sources close to him.
The Palestinian death toll from the war has surpassed 28,000 people, according to the Health Ministry in Gaza. The war began with Hamas’s assault into Israel on October 7, in which militants killed about 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and abducted around 250.
Keir Starmer last night warned the expected Israeli invasion of Rafah would be “catastrophic” for civilians. The Labour leader tweeted: “There are over 1.4 million displaced Palestinians in Rafah and it is the gateway to aid for Gaza – an Israeli offensive there would be catastrophic. The fighting must stop now. We need a sustainable ceasefire.”