I share your concern about the violence we have witnessed in May. My thoughts are with all those affected, especially the families of those civilians killed.
The UK was clear from the outset in urging all parties to de-escalate. I welcome the announced ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, effective as of the 21st May. This is an essential step to ending the cycle of violence and loss of civilian life. The UK worked actively to urge the parties to work with mediators towards an immediate ceasefire, and fully supported Egyptian, Qatari and UN efforts to that end, working closely with the US.
Going forward, Hamas must end its attacks on Israel. It is also important for Israel to facilitate rapid humanitarian access in and out of Gaza. Likewise, Hamas must cease mortar attacks on these crossings. I welcome the announcement on the 20th May that the UK will provide an initial £3.2 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in response to their flash appeal. This will help the UNRWA deliver life-saving humanitarian aid to those that need it most.
All sides must now work together to consolidate the ceasefire and to find a durable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which will end the cycle of violence and deliver a sustainable and just peace.
The UK remains committed to the two-state solution as the best way to bring peace and stability to the region. I am assured that the UK will do all it can to support efforts to this end.