October 9th, 2023
Written by John Grogan
The first thing I did when I arrived in Liverpool yesterday for the Labour Party Conference was to go to the magnificent catholic cathedral and join the early morning mass goers in praying for the people of Israel and Palestine.
The Old Testament reading from the prophet Isaiah which spoke of the ‘cry of distress’ from Israel reminded us that the horrors of the weekend have been repeated all too frequently over the long centuries in the land which is holy to the adherents of the three great Abrahamic religions including Jews, Christians and Muslims.
Later, we saw our leader Keir Starmer set out clearly Labour’s response to the recent attacks, on behalf of all of us, condemning the ‘appalling atrocities’. There can never be any excuse for the massacre or kidnapping of innocents.
In the future a Labour Government would support a two state solution with an independent Israel and Palestine both secure within their borders.
Acting with our friends and allies in Europe and the Biden administration and using our experience from the Irish peace process Britain could make a contribution to progress. We must all do what we can to make sure that once the current terrible situation is over all our efforts are turned to building a lasting peace. Tonight from 7pm in the St Andrew’s Church in Keighley in a long planned event both Israelis and Palestinians will join local people in prayers and discussions on this theme.