Our horror at the brutal attack in Israel by Hamas on October 7 keeps growing as we witness Israel's attacks in Gaza, which have killed thousands of innocent Palestinians.

Over 7,000 children have died. Others have lost their families or are enduring surgery without anaesthetic in what remains of Gaza’s hospitals. They are too young to understand how grown-ups can punish them and those they love so cruelly. 

As the occupying power in Gaza, Israel is bound by the Geneva Convention, with a duty to refrain from collective punishment. Yet prominent Israeli leaders make no bones about their aim to 'eliminate', 'erase', 'burn' and 'reduce Gaza to rubble', while calling Palestinians 'animals'.

Their language is no better than the language of Hamas but the UK is abstaining from UN calls for an urgent humanitarian ceasefire unless it calls the Hamas attack a terrorist act. The UK is not however insisting the UN mention the assaults, detentions and murders illegal Jewish settlers are inflicting on Palestinians and other minority groups, supported by Israeli Government ministers.

How are readers of the Andover Advertiser squaring the scenes we are witnessing with our Government’s position on this so-called war? We hope that, like an increasing number of British people, you might call, urgently, for a permanent ceasefire and a just, negotiated settlement. Not only is it wrong not to stand up for peace and justice.

The consequences of letting the slaughter continue, and spread further afield, are terrifying to contemplate.

Alison and Peter Vaspe

Anna Valley

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