The government has insisted that it would not sell arms where they could be used for internal repression.
The Rafah offensive is a clear breach of this standard. I have written to the Foreign Secretary to urge the government to suspend arms sales immediately.

Dear Lord Cameron,


Suspension of arms sales to Israel in light of Rafah escalation


I am writing again to urge the government to urgently reconsider its decision to continue to sell arms to Israel in light of further loss of life in Rafah. My constituents and I are horrified by the ongoing violence that has cost tens of thousands of innocent lives.


Throughout the escalation of the conflict in Israel and Gaza over the last few months, the Government has insisted that there are ‘strict’ criteria by which new arms licenses are reviewed and approved, and that alleged breaches of international law would be taken seriously. In responses to previous correspondence I have sent, Lord Ahmad has stressed that ‘we will not issue a license if there is a clear risk that the equipment might be used for internal repression’ (received on 20th February 2024).


Netanyahu’s insistence on Israeli Defence Force (IDF) offensives in Rafah clearly present a great risk of internal repression, as recognised by the international community and NGOs. Having been forced by Israeli military operations into Rafah, there is a bleak future awaiting over 100,000 people with nowhere else to go. This is a tragedy that has already gone on for too long. Further military operations will only result in more pain, more destruction and more killing of innocent civilians. The possibility of British arms supporting such destruction is unconscionable.


The Government must take seriously calls from international organisations, courts and relief agencies to support an immediate ceasefire, and halt arms sales to Israel, in addition to publishing the legal advice it has received on the legality of continuing to grant licenses to Israel.


These essential steps to peace must be complimented with a robust plan for access to humanitarian aid, the release of hostages and a commitment to a negotiated settlement. I look forward to your response at the earliest opportunity.


Yours sincerely,

Sarah Owen MP

Link to Instagram Link to Twitter Link to YouTube Link to Facebook Link to LinkedIn Link to Snapchat Close Fax Website Location Phone Email Calendar Building Search