Scotland's first minister calls on UK to take in refugees from Gaza

Scotland's first minister calls on UK to take in refugees from Gaza
2 min read
18 October, 2023
Humza Yousaf said that Scotland was willing to take in refugees from Gaza as Israel's fierce and indiscriminate assault on the territory continues.
Humza Yousaf's wife's relatives are trapped in Gaza [Getty]

Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf has announced a plan to offer shelter to the people of Gaza during an address at his party's annual conference on Tuesday, amid fierce and indiscriminate strikes which have killed over 3,450 people and wounded 12,000 in the besieged Palestinian territory.

Yousaf said that, wherever possible, injured children, women and men should be treated. 

"There are currently one million people displaced within Gaza. So therefore, I’m calling today on the international community to commit to a worldwide refugee programme," he said.

The Scottish First Minister also urged the UK to take urgent steps to ensure a resettlement scheme for Palestinians fleeing Gaza, adding that Scotland was "willing to be the first country in the UK to offer safety and sanctuary to those who were caught up in these terrible attacks".

Yousaf noted that Scotland had a home for asylum seekers from different countries, including Syria and Ukraine, for a long time.

Five relatives of Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf’s wife Nadia El-Nakla were reportedly injured in Israel's relentless bombardment of the besieged enclave. At least 1,000 of those killed have been children.

His wife's parents, Elizabeth and Maged El-Nakla, who live in Dundee, travelled to Gaza shortly before the war to visit their son and four grandchildren and Maged's 92-year-old mother, who is unwell.

The couple have been unable to leave Gaza since then. Yousuf’s wife, Nadia El-Nakla, told the BBC that her parents "continually tell me they feel like they’re going to die".