British minister Sayeeda Warsi resigns over Gaza policy

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 05 August, 2014, 6:09pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 06 August, 2014, 3:48am

British Foreign Office minister Sayeeda Warsi resigned yesterday, saying she could no longer back Prime Minister David Cameron's policy over Gaza.

Warsi, the minister responsible for faith and communities, tweeted that she was stepping down from the role.

"Our policy in relation to the Middle East peace process generally, but more recently our approach and language during the current crisis in Gaza, is morally indefensible," Warsi wrote in her resignation letter to Cameron. "Our approach in relation to the current conflict is neither consistent with our values, specifically our commitment to the rule of law and our long history of support for international justice."

Cameron refused yesterday to condemn Israel's actions in Gaza when he was asked if he agreed with comments by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. Warsi had reposted a tweet quoting Ban as saying that the bombing of a UN shelter in Rafah was "a moral outrage and a criminal act".

A statement from Cameron's office said: "The prime minister regrets that Baroness Warsi has decided to stand down and is grateful for the excellent work that she has done. Our policy has always been consistently clear - the situation in Gaza is intolerable and we've urged both sides to agree to an immediate and unconditional ceasefire."