Thank you for writing to me about the situation in Gaza. I have read your email carefully and noted the key points that you raise.
The humanitarian situation in Gaza remains deeply concerning, especially with the additional pressures of Covid-19. The difficulties are exacerbated by restrictions on movement and access to the Gaza strip, which is something the UK remains concerned about.
Restrictions on movement impact infrastructure development, the delivery of vital humanitarian services and limit the professional development of health and humanitarian workers. I welcome the UK’s provision of £1.3 million, between 2018 and 2021, to support the UN’s Access Coordination Unit (ACU), which works to ensure humanitarian access to Gaza for UN and NGO workers by intervening when travel permits issued by Israel are delayed. The ACU has been absolutely instrumental in facilitating access, with more than 3,200 humanitarian personnel receiving assistance between October 2019 and March 2020. It is my understanding that the situation is continually monitored and the UK regularly raises concerns with the Israeli government.
The UK has been a long supporter of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which provides primary healthcare to more than 1.2 million people in Gaza and stability in the wider region. In 2020/21, the UK is providing £34.5 million of funding to the UNRWA.
For more information please see: https://www.unrwa.org/
Ultimately, there needs to be a just, fair, agreed, and realistic solution to the Palestinian refugee question as part of a negotiated peace agreement. The UK is firmly committed to a two-state solution to provide the long-term answer for Palestinian refugees and continues to work closely with international partners, strongly advocating for a two-state solution and encouraging a return to meaningful negotiations in the region. The Foreign Secretary did so most recently in a meeting with French and German Foreign Ministers on 19 June.
I have recently written to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office about Israel and Palestine and other important related issues. Please see below a letter from the Rt Hon. James Cleverly MP, Minister of State for the Middle East and North Africa:
Thank you again for writing to me.
With best wishes.
Jonathan Lord MP
Member of Parliament for Woking