10th May 2021
Dear Foreign Secretary,
Eviction of families in East Jerusalem and vaccines for all Palestinians
I am writing to ask for your urgent action in response to the the Palestinian residents of Sheikh Jarrah in East Jerusalem being summoned with an eviction notices from their homes by the Jerusalem District Court.
In total, 58 people, including 17 children, are imminently due to be forcibly displaced to make way for Jewish only settlements. Over the last week we have seen violent settler groups, backed by the Israeli state, intimidating, assaulting Palestinian residents and setting light to Palestinian fields.
2020 saw the highest rate of settlement expansion in East Jerusalem on record and over 1500 Palestinians are under threat of their homes being demolished and forcibly displaced.
In a recent video statement, the Consul General to Jerusalem stated: ‘the UK position is clear, East Jerusalem is occupied, and it’s been illegally annexed” and ‘it’s not too late that justice will prevail for the residents of East Jerusalem and I’m here to make clear we very much hope it will’.
The UK has a responsibility to ensure international law is upheld. I therefore urge you to join calls for the immediate repeal of the Jerusalem District Court’s decisions so families of Sheikh Jarrah can remain in their homes and to condemn the violence Al-Aqsa Mosque complex.
On a separate matter, millions of Palestinians living in the Occupied Territories still have not received their COVID-19 vaccine, despite Israel having one of the most advanced vaccination programmes in the world. The supply of vaccines to the Palestinian West Bank and Gaza Strip barely scratches at the surface of the region’s needs.
The Israeli Government has a responsibility to protect those living in the Occupied Territories from COVID-19 and the continued slow pace of the vaccination programme in these areas endangers Palestinian lives and hinders global efforts to defeat the virus. I therefore implore you to apply pressure on your Israeli counterpart to end this disparity and ensure the vaccination programme is rolled out fully in the Occupied Territories as a matter of urgency.
I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Fleur Anderson MP