UK Parliament under Fire for Declining Netanyahu Arrest Petition

In-depth Report:

The British Parliament has come under increasing fire over its decision to skip a debate on a petition calling for the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“It’s quite disappointing that the Parliament has refused to play by its own rules. The fact is that it’s a particular issue which receives over 100,000 signatures that ultimately allows to be debated on the floor of the House. The fact that it has been declined, gives rise to many questions,” said Anas al-Tikriti, chief executive of the Cordoba Foundation.

“It seems to me that the Parliament has failed in its duty. It seems to me that this is the continuation of the pro-Israel lobby in its attempt to sweep under the carpet the crimes committed by Israel,” he told Press TV’s UK Desk on Friday.

‘Important petition’

Al-Tikriti described the petition as an important bid, which shows the British people want an end to their government’s support for the Israeli regime.

“I think that 112,000 signatures means that there is a quite tremendous disgust in British government’s continuous relationship with Israel… It demonstrates that there is a huge gap between what the British public feels and wants and how the British government and its politicians behave,…”

he underscored.

Earlier this week, the British parliament announced that it will not debate the petition calling for the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over war crimes.

The petition has already received over 112,000 signatures, well above 100,000 signatures necessary to qualify the motion for a debate in parliament.


It was uploaded on the UK Parliament’s official website on August 7.

Those signing the petition wanted Netanyahu to be brought to justice for the crimes committed against Palestinian people during Israel’s deadly war on the Gaza Strip last year.

However, the House of Commons’ Petitions Committee announced Wednesday that it is not possible, neither under the international law, nor the UK law, to take action against the Israeli prime minister over Tel Aviv’s war crimes against the people of Gaza.

‘Staunch support for Israel’

The British government, which is seen as one of the staunch supporters of the Israeli regime, had already rejected the bid.

“Under UK and international law, visiting heads of foreign governments, such as Prime Minister Netanyahu, have immunity from legal process, and cannot be arrested or detained,” the government said on the petition website.

Earlier this month, British Prime Minister David Cameron announced that his country “remains staunch” in its “defense of Israel”.

Cameron made the pledge while meeting with visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at 10 Downing Street in London on September 10.

Anti-Israel sentiments

Netanyahu’s two-day visit to London provoked anger among many Britons with a number of them gathering outside Downing Street on to demand his arrest for war crimes in the Gaza Strip.

Last year, Tel Aviv launched a 50-day war on the besieged coastal territory, killing nearly 22-hundred people, most of them civilians. Thousands more were injured and some 100-thousand houses were damaged during the indiscriminate attacks.

The war drew global condemnation and prompted many people across the world to join campaigns against the Israeli regime, including BDS Movement (boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel).

Articles by: Press TV

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