British ambassador to Israel filmed at Gaza border during protests

British ambassador to Israel filmed at Gaza border during protests
A militant propaganda video filming Israeli forces at the border revealed an unreported trip taken by the British ambassador to Israel, allegedly concerned by the use of violence against protesters.
3 min read
02 May, 2018
Ambassador Quarrey as seen in an Islamic Jihad propaganda video [Twitter]

The British ambassador to Israel has been identified in a video posted by Gaza's Islamic Jihad militant group, in which he appears alongside a top Israeli army commander, revealing his unreported trip to the Gaza border during last month's protests which saw the killing of 48 Palestinian protestors by Israeli forces.

The video, which only identifies Israeli military commander Yoav Mordechai, seems to threaten the general by demonstrating he is within range of the militant group's snipers.

However David Quarrey, the British diplomat, has been identified by The Daily Telegraph as standing next to Mordechai, wearing a helmet and blue bullet-proof vest.

Mr Quarrey was reportedly invited by the Israeli military to visit the Gaza border during the protests, after he voiced concern over Israel's use of live ammunition against unarmed Palestinian protesters.

"On Friday 27 April, Her Majesty's Ambassador to Israel undertook a short visit to the Israeli side of the border between Israel and the Occupied Gaza strip, after he raised concerns regarding the use of live fire by the IDF upon Palestinians on the Gaza side of the border," a Foreign Office spokeswoman told The Telegraph.  

Mr Quarrey has not made any public statements about his trip, or whether he still holds concerns over the level of Israeli violence used against protesters.

On the day he visited, three Palestinians were shot dead, along with a 15-year-old who died from his wounds on Saturday. Over 154 other people were hospitalised for gunshot wounds and tear gas inhalation, Gaza's health ministry said.

The British Foreign Ministry has condemned the use of live ammunition against Gaza protestors after the first Great Return March demonstration on March 30.

"There is an urgent need to establish the facts, including why such a volume of live fire was used and what role Hamas played in the violence," the ministry said. "But the most important thing is to ensure that there is no repeat of what happened, with all sides committing to peaceful protest, restraint and international law."

However there has been a resounding silence from the UK's Prime Minister Theresa May - considered "a long-standing friend of Israel" - who is yet to speak out on the protests which have seen 48 Palestinians killed and at least 1,600 wounded by gunfire, with thousands more needing treatment for tear gas inhalation and wounds from rubber-coated steel bullets.

David Quarrey has been the British ambassador to Israel since 2015, previously working as former Prime Minister Tony Blair's private secretary.

Quarrey is set to play a key role in Prince William's official visit to Israel, during a tour which will also include the West Bank and Jordan.