Seven Labour parliamentarians toured Israel and the Palestinian territories this week on a delegation run by Labour Friends of Israel.
LFI parliamentary chair Joan Ryan led the delegation, and she was joined by MPs Louise Ellman, Andrew Gwynne, Stephen Morgan, Sharon Hodgson, and Jonathan Reynolds, as well as Lord Roy Kennedy.
The delegation first visited Jerusalem, including a tour of the Old City followed by a wreath laying ceremony at Yad Vashem. The group then met with officials from the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Ramallah.
In a series of political meetings Labour MPs met with their Israeli Labor counterparts, including Avi Gabbay, Labor leader, and Isaac Herzog, leader of the opposition. David Quarrey, Britain’s Ambassador to Israel, also met with the delegation.
The group paid a visit to Israel’s award-winning Save A Child’s Heart hospital and received a briefing on Israeli counter-terror measures at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism in Herzliya.
The delegation then visited the Yizthak Rabin museum and memorial and met with Tel Aviv city hall officials to discuss how to foster innovation and investment in our cities.
Reflecting on the delegation, Joan Ryan MP said: “I’m honoured to be leading a delegation of Labour parliamentarians to Israel and the Palestinian Territories this week. With the recent tragic events at the Gazan border, it’s more important than ever for Labour MPs to visit the region and fully understand the complex situation on the ground.”
“We have seen for ourselves over the last two days the very real security challenges facing Israel, with a barrage of missiles hitting Israeli communities in the south, including a kindergarten in a kibbutz.”
Jonathan Reynolds MP said: “Although the prospects for peace do not look good at present, aided by the recklessness of President Trump, on each visit I have been struck by the incredible co-existence work of grassroots Israeli and Palestinian organisations… Wherever you go within Israel itself you see Muslims, Jews and Christians living their daily lives alongside one another.”