David Cameron to press Israel's Benny Gantz on Gaza war, humanitarian obligations

David Cameron to press Israel's Benny Gantz on Gaza war, humanitarian obligations
Cameron also commented on the emerging famine in Gaza, which is leading to an increased amount of deaths among children and the elderly.
3 min read
06 March, 2024
David Cameron will reportedly press Gantz on Israel's role in the humanitarian crisis in Gaza [Getty]

UK Foreign minister David Cameron is on Wednesday set to warn Israeli war cabinet member Benny Gantz over Israeli conduct in its war on Gaza.

Speaking to peers in the House of Lords during a foreign affairs debate on Tuesday, Cameron spoke of the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza, which has prompted warnings to Israel over its international obligations.

"People are dying of hunger, people are dying of otherwise preventable diseases," he told peers, adding that this is occurring as aid deliveries into the enclave decrease.

"So patience needs to run very thin. And a whole series of warnings need to be given, starting with the meeting I have with minister Gantz when he visits the UK tomorrow."

Included in the warnings are putting requests to Israel to expand the type of aid that can be delivered, with Cameron noting that many items are denied entry because they're allegedly dual-use goods. He added that there should be a resumption of electricity and water to all parts of Gaza.

He also warned that Israel could be breaching international law, saying "Israel is the occupying power. It is responsible. And that has consequences, including in how we look at whether Israel is compliant with international humanitarian law."

Israel has been taken to the International Court of Justice by South Africa on accusations that it has breached its obligations under the genocide convention, a charge the court found was plausible in a preliminary ruling.

Israel's war on Gaza has killed 30,717 Palestinians and injured a further 72,156, with increasing reports emerging that children and the elderly are beginning to die of starvation in the enclave.

The comments from Cameron come as Benny Gantz travels to the UK as part of a foreign tour that saw him travel to the US, meeting US Vice President Kamala Harris on Tuesday.

According to Axios, Gantz's meeting with Harris saw the Vice President press the Israeli delegation hard on the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza, with the delegation reportedly being surprised at the strength of the criticism leveled against Israel.

Gantz's foreign travels have also reportedly widened a rift with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the PM had not given prior approval for the visit.

According to Israel's Channel 12, Netanyahu instructed the Israeli embassy in London to not assist Gantz on any part of his visit to the UK, including security coordination.

Gantz is set to return to return to Israel on Wednesday evening following his meeting with Cameron.