Category Archives: Britain’s current role

UK calls on all parties to take urgent steps to reduce tensions and avoid further escalation in Jerusalem

Statement by British Ambassador Barbara Woodward at the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East The UK shares the concerns expressed around this [Security Council] table about the fragile situation in Jerusalem. It is crucial that … Continue reading

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UK call to prevent escalating tensions in Israel and occupied Palestinian territory as religious holidays approach

Statement by British Ambassador Barbara Woodward at the UN Security Council Delivered, March 22, 2022 Let me start by once again reinforcing the need to prevent a return to the violence we witnessed in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories … Continue reading

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Unilateral actions risk undermining engagement between Israeli Government and Palestinian leadership

Statement by Ambassador James Kariuki at the Security Council briefing on the Middle East Peace Process – Published 19 January 2022 Thank you Madam President. Before I start I’d like to stress, as my Foreign Secretary has said, the United … Continue reading

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Hamas terror listing is yet another UK betrayal of the Palestinians

By Avi Shlaim, published in Middle East Eye on 30 November 2021. As long as its political opponents are labelled ‘terrorists’, Israel is absolved from the need to negotiate and gets a free pass from its allies to continue using … Continue reading

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Israel’s designation as “terrorist” of six Palestinian civil society organisations: letter of protest to the Foreign Secretary

European Parliamentarians, including British MPs and Peers, have written to the Foreign Secretary calling for Government action to dissuade Israel from three “red line” actions:– designating six Palestinian civil society organisations as “terrorist”– evicting Palestinian families from their homes in … Continue reading

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All parties to Israeli-Palestinian conflict must be open to further dialogue – GOV.UK

Statement by UK Ambassador Barbara Woodward at the Security Council Briefing on the Middle East. Delivered at the UN on September 29, 2021 Madam President, the United Kingdom welcomes recent engagement between the Israeli Government and the Palestinian leadership, including … Continue reading

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Preventing further escalation of violence in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories

Statement by UK Ambassador Barbara Woodward at the Security Council briefing on the Middle East Delivered on 30 August 2021. Let me start by once again reinforcing the need to prevent a further escalation in violence in Israel and the … Continue reading

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Israel, Palestine, and Law

Balfour Project statement, 26 May 2021 Equal rights under the law are the foundation stone of all democracies. Israel views itself as a democracy. But many in Israel and around the world, including in Britain, were dismayed by the Knesset’s … Continue reading

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Why the rule of law matters – Rt Hon Baroness Hale of Richmond

Speaking at the Balfour Project online 2-day conference “Israel/Palestine: in search of the rule of law” on 25/26 May 2021. Click here to view the other speakers at the conference. Sir Vincent Fean: Good day, everybody. And welcome to our … Continue reading

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Israel/Palestine: recent developments at the ICJ and ICC – Philippe Sands QC

Speaking at the Balfour Project online 2-day conference “Israel/Palestine: in search of the rule of law” on 25/26 May 2021. Click here to view the other speakers at the conference. Dominic Grieve QC: Now it’s my great pleasure to introduce … Continue reading

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Essays on Equality, Rights and Responsibilities

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Israeli-Palestinian peace relies on this essential truth being grasped

This piece, by John McHugo, a Balfour Project Trustee and head of its Fellowship Programme, was published by The Independent. As the dust settles on the latest Israel/Palestinian conflict, and the blood of innocents and perpetrators dries indifferently, the great fear is … Continue reading

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Israel-Palestine: in search of the rule of law by Sir Vincent Fean in the Arab Digest

Written by Sir Vincent Fean for the Arab Digest Just when you think it can’t get any worse – it does. Déjà vu, only worse.  It is the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, as I used to describe it in my time as … Continue reading

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Sir Vincent Fean, Chair of Balfour Project, on BBC, 12 May 2021

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UK-European statement condemns Israeli settlements, East Jerusalem evictions

The Governments of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK issued this statement on Israeli settlements on May 6. We urge the Government of Israel to reverse its decision to advance the construction of 540 settlement units in the Har … Continue reading

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson Confirms UK Opposition to ICC Investigation into war crimes in Palestine

The Balfour Project read with sadness and dismay the concluding words in the Prime Minister’s letter to the Conservative Friends of Israel of 9 April 2021. These words assert that “Palestine is not a sovereign State” and that the investigation … Continue reading

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The British Government position on Jerusalem

The British Government has now replied to the six recommendations in the Balfour Project statement “Israel-Palestine: equal rights for a lasting peace” which concluded our 27 October conference on Jerusalem. We are indebted to our patron, Rt Revd John Pritchard, … Continue reading

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Seeking cooperation in order to achieve a two-state solution – Ambassador Barbara Woodward

Statement by Ambassador Barbara Woodward at the Security Council briefing on the situation in the Middle East. Published 21 December 2020 Thank you, Mr President, and thank you to Special Coordinator Mladenov for his briefing. As others have done, I’d … Continue reading

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Souvenir Booklet from our Jerusalem Conference 2020

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Labour MP Stephen Kinnock initiated debate on the settlement and annexation of the Occupied Palestinian Territories

Thursday 24 September 2020 Click here to view video. 3.13 pm Stephen Kinnock (Aberavon) (Lab)I beg to move, That this House has considered settlement and annexation of the Occupied Palestinian territories. This country has a unique place in history and … Continue reading

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The British Government’s current position on Israel and Palestine: Water

Question by Baroness Northover (Lib Dem) on 24th September 2020 (HL8468) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made ofreports that the government of Israel is demolishing water, sanitation and hygiene structures used by Palestinians in the West … Continue reading

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The British Government’s current position on Israel and Palestine: Recognition of Palestine as a state

Question by Baroness Janke (lib Dem) on 7th February 2022 (HL6030) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to recognise Palestine as an independent state. Answer from Lord Ahmed (Conservative) on 21st February 2022 We continue to work … Continue reading

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The British Government’s current position on Israel and Palestine: Living conditions in Gaza

Question by Baroness Sheehan (Lib Dem) on 21st May 2021 (HL535) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact of reductions in the Overseas Development Assistance Budget on donations to organisations bringing humanitarian aid to … Continue reading

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The British Government’s current position on Israel and Palestine: Elections

Question by Baroness Tonge (Independent) on 18th january 2021 (HL12261) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that all Palestinians are able to vote freely in (1) the elections for the legislature on 22 May, … Continue reading

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The British Government’s current position on Israel and Palestine: Environmental issues

Question by Baroness Janke (Lib Dem) on 24th January 2022 (HL5626) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to protect Palestinians in territories occupied by Israel from damage to olive groves and crops by Israeli settlers. Answer from … Continue reading

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British Government’s Current Position: Trade with Israel

Questions by the Bishop of Southwark (Bishop) on 8th November (HL3843) and (HL3844) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the reduction in their funding of the UN Relief and Works Agency for … Continue reading

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British Government’s Current Position: Restrictions of movement in the West Bank

Question: by Baroness Tonge (Independent) on 10 June 2019 Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Hebron, (HL16231) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the consequences for Palestinian children in Hebron of the removal of the Temporary International Presence … Continue reading

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British Government’s Current Position: Settler and Israeli army violence towards Palestinians

Question by Claire Hannah ( Social Democrat and Labour Party) on 16th May 2022 (UIN 2697) To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment she has made of the (a) fatal shooting of Palestinian … Continue reading

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British Government’s Current Position: Prioritising peace and cooperation in the Middle East in the midst of COVID-19

Question by Baroness Janke (Lib Dem) on 1st February 2022 (HL5843) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what support they intend to offer, if any, to the COVID-19 vaccination programme for Palestinians in Gaza, given reports of shortages of medical equipment. … Continue reading

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John McHugo on Why Britain has a Special Responsibility to the Palestinian People Today

A talk given online on 30th June 2020. John McHugo is a trustee of the Balfour Project and a board member of CAABU, The Council for Arab British Understanding. This paper is the edited text of a Balfour Project talk … Continue reading

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PM Johnson’s appeal to Israel over annexation

By Andrew Whitley, Trustee and member of the Executive Committee of the Balfour Project Prime Minister Boris Johnson today published a last-minute appeal to Israel not to proceed with the Netanyahu government’s plans to annex parts of the occupied West … Continue reading

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‘Boris Johnson must stand up against an annexation of the West Bank’ – Christian Aid

By William Bell, Head of Middle East, Christian Aid UK and Ireland Last June, an 82-year-old Palestinian refugee called Fayza in Lebanon’s Nahr el-Bared camp wept as she told me: “Palestine is in our bones – it is not something … Continue reading

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Boris Johnson has to stand up to Netanyahu’s annexation plans – for the sake of the Palestinians and peace – by Donald Macintyre

Published in the Independent 30 May 2020 Whatever Boris Johnson’s troubles, he can always comfort himself that unlike the prime minister of a British ally 3,000 miles away, he’s not running the country while simultaneously being tried on corruption charges. But … Continue reading

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Podcast: Vincent Fean on the ICC, Trade Agreements and Umbrella Organisations

Diana Safieh: A question from Sara Apps, is there an opportunity to unlock the blockage on the ICC application? What best can we do to help? Vincent Fean: Palestine joined the International Criminal Court in 2015 after the UN General … Continue reading

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Letter to Boris Johnson on Israeli annexation 1 May 2020

Click here to read the Guardian article.

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Letter from Claudia Beamish MSP to Dominic Raab MP

This is a letter from Claudia Beamish MSP Member of the Scottish Parliament for South Scotland, to the Rt Hon Dominic Raab, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and First Secretary of State.

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UK Government affirms its position that Israel’s annexation plans of occupied Palestinian territory is contrary to international law

In a response to a letter to the Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab from Caabu Chair Rt Hon David Jones MP, the Foreign Office and DFID Minister responsible to the Middle East, Rt Hon James Cleverly MP has affired the UK … Continue reading

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Remarks by HRH The Prince of Wales at a reception in Bethlehem

24 January 2020 Throughout my life, I have tried, in whatever very small way I can, to foster greater understanding between people of different faiths, to heal divisions and to remind people of so much that we share in common … Continue reading

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The time is right to recognise Palestine

Text of letter published in The Times, January 20th 2020 THE TIME IS RIGHT TO RECOGNISE PALESTINESir, Today Britain attends her last EU foreign affairs council. On the agenda is the Middle East peace process, which must address recognition of … Continue reading

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Holy Land Coordination 2020

We must not ignore the voice of people in the Holy Land Every year we come to encounter and hear the people of the Holy Land. We are inspired by their enduring resilience and faith in a worsening situation. In … Continue reading

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The status of West Bank settlements under international law.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cannot rewrite international law. By John McHugo , Balfour Project Trustee and International Lawyer Following the comments by the US Secretary of State on Monday, we have felt it necessary to clarify the legal … Continue reading

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Scottish Parliament endorses Balfour Project Call to Action Sept 3rd 2019

Claudia Beamish MSP (Labour) introduced a members’ business debate on motion S5M-16637, “Towards an independent Palestinian state: a Scottish proposal” calling for action leading to an independent Palestinian state and acknowledging Britain’s historical responsibilities in what was to become Israel … Continue reading

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Israel’s election, Palestine, and Britain’s best response: Equal Rights

This article was first published on the Conservative Middle East Council website Analysis 23 September 2019 Sir Vincent Fean KCVO Sir Vincent Fean is Chair of Trustees of the Balfour Project. Between 2010-14, Sir Vincent was British Consul-General in Jerusalem. … Continue reading

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115 British Parliamentarians demand British Prime Minister act robustly to any Israeli annexation of Occupied Palestinian Territory

115 British Parliamentarians demand British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson act robustly to any Israeli annexation of Occupied Palestinian Territory. In the letter, sent from the Britain-Palestine All-Party Parliamentary Group, the Parliamentarians insisted that the British Government and its partners in … Continue reading

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Should Britain recognise a sovereign Palestine now? Event report

Talk by Sir Vincent Fean at recent Meretz UK Event Meretz UK hosted an event on 7th July in London’s Jewish Community centre JW3, to discuss the prospects, advantages and likely outcomes of recognition of the state of Palestine alongside … Continue reading

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What is the UK’s role in Israel – Palestine today?

Speakers: Sir Tom Phillips and Sir Vincent Fean Chairing the debate: Prof. Yossi Mekelberg, Professor of International Relations at Regent’s University, London and senior consulting research fellow for the MENA programme, Chatham House. OneVoice Europe hosted an event on 26th … Continue reading

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Is There a Plausible Alternative to The Two-State Solution? By Tony Klug

  Dr. Tony Klug has written extensively on Israeli-Palestinian issues. He is a special advisor on the Middle East to the Oxford Research Group and a consultant to the Palestine Strategy Group and the Israel Strategic Forum. His Ph.D. thesis … Continue reading

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Gaza, one year on

Letter to the Times 30 March 2019 Sir,A year on from the avoidable deaths of 60 people at the Gaza fence, rockets and reprisals are recurring. This dismal pattern of behaviour must be broken. Two million people are imprisoned in … Continue reading

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Towards an independent Palestinian state: a Scottish call to action

Israel/Palestine: Equal Rights 17 March 2019 From Edinburgh, and the home university of Arthur Balfour,we acknowledge Britain’s historical responsibilities in the Holy Land, from before the Balfour Declaration through the British Mandate to today. Gaza was, is, and always will … Continue reading

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