Campaigns. It is important that I continue to know the strength of feeling on an issue and I prefer to respond to every inquiry, but the sheer size of campaign correspondence means that it is hard to justify to the tax payer the cost and time taken for individual written replies, so regrettably I will no longer reply to every item of campaign correspondence.  I will  post a response to the campaign on the "Responses to campaigns" page of my website.

I am sorry to do this, as it is rather impersonal, but can see no other way of maintaining a good service for all my constituents unless I approach campaigns this way.


03 JAN 2019

UK Aid and Palestine

Thank you for taking the time to email me about Palestinian curriculum and UK aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA).

I understand your concern on this matter and I hope the following information on this topic from the Department for International Development is reassuring:

The Government strongly condemns all forms of violence and incitement to violence. Both the PA and the Government of Israel need to prepare their populations for peaceful coexistence, including by promoting a more positive portrayal of each other. The Government shares your deep concern about the textbook content revealed in the IMPACT-SE report into the PA's new curriculum. A thorough UK review of textbook content will be carried out this year, and the PA has agreed to take account of its findings.
The Government has also been very clear that the UK does not fund Palestinian terrorism and Palestinian terrorists do not receive UK aid money. Our support for the PA is only used to pay the salaries of health and education public sector workers on a vetted list. This enables the delivery basic services and helps around 25,000 young Palestinians go to school each year. The vetting process covers a large number of different risk categories including terrorism financing, and checks that all UK funds reach the intended beneficiaries.
The UK continues to support a two-state solution that would see a safe and secure Israel living alongside a viable and sovereign Palestinian state. By building strong institutions to help create a Palestinian government, as well as continuing to help them to educate a generation of young people and provide vital health services, our support for the PA is essential for promoting stability and reducing poverty.

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