UK MP Layla Moran says family trapped in Gaza Church among hundreds
The Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford and Abingdon, Layla Moran, said that her relatives, including her grandmother, her cousin, his wife, and their 11-year-old twins, are trapped among hundreds of people sheltering in a Catholic church in Gaza since the start of the war.
Moran told the BBC that her Palestinian Christian extended family was sheltering in the Holy Family Church complex since their home was bombed in the first week of the war.
Moran reported that a tank was outside the church complex, while people inside have died, with snipers at every window of the opposite building pointing to the church. She said the snipers are shooting anyone going out of buildings to use toilets.
I am desperately worried for my extended family in Gaza City.— Layla Moran 🔶 (@LaylaMoran) December 17, 2023
They have no electricity, no water, no food, and now a sniper is inside the Church compound where they are sheltering.
My family are not collateral damage. We need an immediate bilateral ceasefire now. pic.twitter.com/zQVpLSdtgN
Earlier, Moran reported that her family had witnessed white phosphorus and gunfire in the Church.
The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem said two women were shot and killed on Saturday while walking to the Sister’s Convent building in the complex. The statement also said that seven were killed and injured while they attempted to protect others in the church.
“No warning was given, no notification was provided,” the patriarchate stated. “They were shot in cold blood inside the premises of the parish, where there are no belligerents.”
The patriarchate reported that a section of the compound, housing 54 individuals with disabilities, was struck by fire from an Israeli tank. This attack led to a fire that demolished the building’s generator, resulting in several residents being unable to use their necessary respirators.
“They are beyond desperate and terrified,” Moran said. “It’s been over 60 days now and it’s just getting worse and worse.”
Layla Moran had previously urged members of the UK Parliament to vote in support of a ceasefire, saying she was “voting for peace”, during the motion in the UK House of Parliament over a ceasefire in Gaza, which was voted down by 293 to 125 votes.
Israel's indiscriminate war on Gaza has killed nearly 19,000 people and injured over 50,000 more. Its ferocious military campaign has targeted residential areas, schools, hospitals, mosques, and churches.