Tommy Sheppard

MP for Edinburgh East

Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories

I am a longstanding advocate of the Palestinian people and am vice convenor of the All Party Group on Palestine.  I am very proud to have written the motion and worked with colleagues across the political parties to succeed in having the motion discussed in the main chamber.

It is clear that if there is to be a viable two-state solution then the occupation has to end and the settlers will either need to be relocated or become citizens of a new Palestine. It’ll be one of the most difficult and complicated negotiations in international conflict resolution. But unless a halt is called to the settlement building programme and both sides commit to starting peace talks the situation will only get worse.

And ultimately, you cannot have a two-state solution whilst one state (Israel) militarily occupies the land designated for the other (Palestine).

Despite being one the main sponsors of the debate, in the end I only got three minutes to argue for the motion and while I know I could always benefit from being more concise - three minutes to talk about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is quite a tall order. You can watch what I did manage to fit in here.

I have since written to Tobias Ellwood to reiterate my four key asks of the UK Government:

  1. A timetable for recognition of a Palestinian state
  2. For the UK to be an active participant and not a passive bystander in international talks
  3. Implement UN resolution 2334 with regard to differentiation between Israeli settlements and Israel proper
  4. Diplomatic and development efforts to support peace groups in Israel

I'm delighted that the motion was supported by MPs from all parties and in the end was agreed unanimously. I hope the Government will take note of the strength of feeling and take action to stop Israel's continued development of illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land which pushes the prospect of peace further away than ever.

The Facts on the Ground
Occupied Palestinian Territories: Israeli Settleme...

Related Posts

 

Comments

No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Guest
Monday, 22 October 2018

Tommy's Blog Articles

Tommy Sheppard
11 October 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
We were supposed to set off from Johnston Terrace at one o’clock on last Saturday’s march for independence. In fact, it was a quarter past two by the time I turned into the Lawnmarket and began the walk down the Royal Mile to Holyrood.That’s what happens when the biggest gathering in years descends upon the centre of Edinburgh and parades through narrow medieval streets. As a popular tweet quipped...
Tommy Sheppard
13 September 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media

Going back to Westminster after the summer recess you can almost feel the impending doom in the air. It’s the calm before the storm. Everyone knows something bad is going to happen. Just not what exactly. Like waiting for the ghoul to reveal itself in a horror movie.

And as the dread unfolds the discussion about whether there should be another Brexit referendum will intensify.

Tommy Sheppard
16 August 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
How’s your festival going? Are you thrilled to bits at the world’s largest arts festival being on your doorstep? Are you overdosing on culture in one of the 200+ festival venues? Or do you spend August grimacing as it takes twice as long to get anywhere and the city centre is taken over by hordes of impossibly enthusiastic young people.Whatever your view on the summer festivals there’s no doubt th...
Tommy Sheppard
20 July 2018
Tommy's Blog
Articles
In 2016, Nicola Sturgeon announced that there would be a Growth Commission to explore Scotland’s economy and the potential that might occur after Independence. Andrew Wilson chaired the commission and in May this year they published their final report – you can read it in full here.There have been many commentaries on the report, from different political persuasions. Below is my contribution – wri...
Tommy Sheppard
20 July 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
This month in parliament we celebrated the 90th anniversary of all women being allowed the vote with the passing of the 1928 Equal Franchise Act. This built on the Act a decade before which gave some women – those over 30 and either married or property owners – the vote. Every time we mark these historical landmarks I am struck not by how long ago they were, but by how recent.The 1920s were an age...