Wales joins Scotland in refusing to fly Israeli flag

Wales joins Scotland in refusing to fly Israeli flag
2 min read
13 October, 2023
Wales joins Scotland in refusing to fly the Israeli flag on their parliament building, citing solidarity with suffering Palestinians and emphasising peace as the ultimate solution amid recent conflict.
The Welsh parliament first officer said that peace was the only solution for Israel and Palestine [Getty]

Wales has refused to fly the Israeli flag outside the Welsh Parliament, joining Scotland which took the same stance rejecting a show of solidarity with Israel.

The Welsh parliament's presiding officer Elin Jones said the Israeli flag must not be flown when Palestinians were suffering.

Jones said the "brutality inflicted on the people of Israel by Hamas" was "abhorrent" but said peace was the only real solution.

The Welsh Parliament has flown the flag of Ukraine since Russia's invasion of the country in February 2022 and has lit up the building in the flag's colours at night.

Earlier this week, Scotland also said it was rejecting a request to fly the Israeli flag.

"The [Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body] considered the request and approval was not given," an SPCB spokesperson said.

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The Conservative Party government which runs the UK has asked government buildings to fly an Israeli flag until Friday if they are able to do so.

However, protesters removed Israeli flags flying above two South Yorkshire town halls this week.

Footage shared on social media showed a man on the roof of Sheffield Town Hall on Tuesday, removing the banner and replacing it with a Palestinian flag.

The flag outside Rotherham Town Hall was also "forcibly" removed, the council said.

A snap YouGov survey of 2,453 adults across the UK, conducted on 11 October, found that only 11 percent of people "strongly support" flying the Israeli flag on government buildings, while 20 percent said they "somewhat support" it.

On the other end of the scale, four in ten UK adults (39%) opposed flying the Israeli flag on government buildings. One in five (19%) "strongly oppose" the idea, while a similar number (20%) "somewhat oppose" it.

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It came after Hamas launched an unprecedented assault on Israel from the besieged Gaza Strip, attacking Israeli settlements and army bases on the border. The attack resulted in the death of over 1,300 Israelis.

In response, Israel has launched a relentless and indiscriminate bombing campaign and imposed a total siege of the strip, killing over 1,750 Palestinians, including at least 500 children, and wounding more than 6,350 people.

The UN has said there was "clear evidence that war crimes may have been committed" by Israel and Hamas.