Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak held a phone call on Monday, discussing the Palestine-Israel conflict. Erdoğan urged Western countries to be more proactive against human rights violations in Gaza, which is suffering from an Israeli siege. He also urged the international community to fulfill its promises to Palestine. Sunak has pledged to always stand with Israel, as concerns grow about the fate of civilians in Gaza ahead of an imminent offensive.
Tens of thousands took to the streets in the UK on Saturday to show solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza. In London, marchers chanted pro-Palestinian slogans and former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn joined in urging Israeli restraint. The heavily policed rally took place with little incident, but 15 people were arrested and nine officers were treated for minor injuries. Erdoğan offered a direct message to Israel and Britain’s Jewish community after the conflict broke out.
The UK Prime Minister, Sunak, has pledged to support Israel in restoring security, stating that the UK will do everything it can to help. However, Amnesty International U.K. questioned Sunak’s statement, stating that the UK stands with Israel and the British Jewish community. Twelve aid agencies, including Oxfam, Action Against Hunger, and Action Aid, called on Sunak and Foreign Secretary James Cleverly to use the UK’s influence to prevent further suffering. Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer called for all parties to the conflict to follow international law and ensure safe humanitarian corridors in Gaza for those fleeing violence.
Demonstrations took place in Manchester, Liverpool, Edinburgh, and across the country, with thousands of people staging an impromptu march to the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh. Home Secretary Suella Braverman urged police chiefs to consider whether chanting pro-Palestine slogans could be considered an offense and suggested waving Palestinian flags could be seen as illegitimate.