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UK Parliament vote on ceasefire in Gaza

SNP and Conservative MPs walked out of the House of Commons after a debate on a ceasefire in Gaza descended into chaos. Image: House of Commons/UK Parliament.

Pro-Palestinian protesters gathered outside the British Parliament demanding their representatives endorse a Scottish National Party call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

There is a sense here that politicians are not listening to the will of the people.

These protesters cannot help but wonder how many more Palestinians would have to die for British politicians to call for an end to the genocide that's already taken more than 30,000 Palestinian lives.

Inside Parliament, chaos and confusion broke out as speaker Lindsay Hoyle broke convention by allowing a vote not just on the government's amendment, but also on one put forward by the opposition Labour Party.

There wasn't much hope for the ruling Conservatives to shift their position so the focus was once again on Labour whose leader, Keir Starmer, had only recently called for a ceasefire, but ahead of the vote, it emerged Labour had persuaded party rebels to vote for their carefully caveated amendment and abstain on the more blunt SNP motion.

The Labour Party, under Keir Starmer, is trying to find a way where they can say they voted for a ceasefire, but with language that basically says until Israel tells them that it's time for a ceasefire.

They are not going to approve a ceasefire. That's the bottom line of Keir Starmer.

He was given 5 million pounds by a multi billionaire whose only interest is ensuring there's no criticism of Israel.

Andrew Feinstein, Former South African MP

As the chaos intensified, the Conservatives pulled out of the process entirely; enraged by the way Labour had been allowed out of a sticky situation.

Soon thereafter a number of SNP and Conservative MPs flounced out.

The Labour proposed amendment was eventually passed, and the speaker returned to the chamber as the world watched on flabbergasted.

The message it does send is that the Tories and Labour are absolutely wedded to the US foreign policy, and that is what they're following.

And this is what's leading them to still not call for a ceasefire properly.

Lindsay German, Anti-War Coalition

The takeaway from the spectacle: a meaningless vote in favour of a ceasefire, a Labour Party that avoided a revolt and resignations, more disappointment for the anti-genocide movement in the UK, and further erosion of Palestinian confidence in countries that have the power to stop the Israeli genocide, but simply won't.

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