Britain May Halt Arms Sales to Israel Over Gaza

Image: getty images

Britain is reviewing all arms export licenses to Israel in response to the Jewish state’s escalating conflict with Hamas in Gaza, a government spokeswoman said on Monday.

Israel launched an offensive against Hamas almost four weeks ago following a surge in cross-border rocket salvoes. Gaza officials say 1,797 Palestinians, most of them civilians, have been killed, while Israel has lost 64 soldiers in combat and three civilians to Palestinian shelling.

“We are currently reviewing all export licenses to Israel to confirm that we think they are appropriate,” a spokeswoman for Prime Minister David Cameron told reporters. The decision to conduct the review was taken last week, she said.

According to a report by a British parliamentary committee last month, outstanding government-approved contracts for export of dual use or military goods to Israel are worth more than 7.8 billion pounds ($13.12 billion). These include contracts to supply body armor, drone components, and missile parts.

“Clearly the current situation has changed compared to when some licenses will have been granted, and we’re reviewing those existing licenses against the current situation but no decisions have been taken beyond going back again and reviewing,” the spokeswoman said.

Britain’s opposition Labor party has accused Cameron of not condemning Israel’s behavior forcefully enough, a charge he rejects.

Tagged as:

Written by


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Britain May Halt Arms Sales to Israel Over Gaza

Thank you!

This article has been sent!