Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 November 2014

Probe into UK arms sales to Israel

Protesters against military action in Gaza during a demonstration in Bristo Square, Edinburgh
Protesters against military action in Gaza during a demonstration in Bristo Square, Edinburgh
A joint statement by America and the UN said they had received assurances that all parties to the conflict had agreed to an unconditional ceasefire (AP)

As the hunt continued for an Israeli officer captured in Gaza, questions were being asked about whether military equipment manufactured in the UK has been used in Israel's offensive on the Palestinian enclave.

Documents obtained by The Independent showed that arms export licences worth £42 million have been granted to 130 British defence manufacturers since 2010 to sell military equipment to Israel, ranging from weapons control and targeting systems to ammunition, drones and armoured vehicles.

The Government said it was reviewing all licences to Israel, but a Labour MP said ministers were "burying their heads in the sand" over the issue of whether UK-manufactured weapons or components have been used in Gaza since the current round of hostilities began three weeks ago.

At least 1,600 Palestinians - most of them civilians - have been killed and 8,000 injured during the assault, while Israel has lost 63 soldiers and three civilians.

A planned ceasefire was shattered early yesterday, with each side blaming the other, and the situation escalated with the apparent capture of Second Lieutenant Hadar Goldin. The Foreign Office was looking into claims that Lt Goldin held joint Israeli-British citizenship, though Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said "no evidence" had been found to back up the assertion.

US president Barack Obama and United Nations secretary general Ban Ki-moon called for the soldier's immediate release but also urged restraint on all sides as Israeli troops pressed deeper into Gaza in the search for him.

Mr Hammond said: "If the reports that Hamas broke the ceasefire are correct then that is very serious indeed, as is the kidnapping of the Israeli soldier which will make it all the more difficult to re-establish the ceasefire to allow a humanitarian pause in Gaza."

Rabbi Reuven Leigh, a chaplain at Cambridge University and a rabbi in the local community, said Lt Goldin - who has a twin brother also serving with the Israeli military in Gaza - had lived in the city for a number of years.

"Shaken to hear of Hadar Goldin's kidnapping, he spent a few years living in Cambridge with his family, please pray for his safe return," he wrote on his Twitter feed.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told US secretary of state John Kerry that Palestinian militants had "unilaterally and grossly" violated the ceasefire and attacked Israeli soldiers.

Palestinian relatives of Islamic Jihad militant Shaaban Al-Dahdouh, which was found under the rubble, during funeral in Gaza City, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinian relatives of Islamic Jihad militant Shaaban Al-Dahdouh, which was found under the rubble, during funeral in Gaza City, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Israeli reserve solders gather in a staging area near the Israel-Gaza border, Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
A makeshift tent stands near to the destruction of buildings at a residential neighborhood, in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinians crowd a window for food aid at a United Nations distribution centre in the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A Palestinian woman waits to receive food aid at a United Nations distribution centre in the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A shop owner carries merchandise outside his shop at a market in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian vendor arranges his merchandise at a market in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Catholic Priest Fr Martin Magill and Buddist Frank Liddy use bell to sound a minutes silence as hundreds gather at Belfast City Hall tonight to pray for peace in the Middle East and an end to other global conflicts. Picture date: Wednesday August 6, 2014. Photo credit: Niall Carson/PA
Hundreds gather at Belfast City Hall for a multi-faith service to pray for peace in the Middle East and an end to other global conflicts. Picture date: Wednesday August 6, 2014. Photo: Niall Carson/PA
Displaced Palestinian Sandus Shaladan sits at a U.N. school where her family had sought refuge during the war, in Gaza City, Gaza Strip, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian boy with a fractured arm from fallen debris caused by an Israeli strike according to the family waits to be checked by Dr. Afif Quneibi, a Palestinian orthopaedic specialist from the West Bank city of Hebron, at the Al Aqsa Martyrs hospital in Deir el-Balah, central Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. Quneibi is one of the several Palestinian doctors from the West Bank that volunteered and crossed into Gaza to offer their help with the wounded by the war. AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians shop at a market in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Volunteer Jenn Byrne takes part in a photocall on Grafron Street, Dublin, where Amnesty International called on the US government to immediately end its ongoing deliveries of large quantities of arms to Israel. The organisation is calling for the imposition of a total arms embargo on all parties to the conflict. Photo: Niall Carson/PA
Backdropped by the damaged minaret of the Al-Azba mosque, Palestinians inspect the damage to the Nada Towers residential neighborhood in the town of Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Israeli solders pose for a group photo on a tank before they leave a staging area near the Israel-Gaza border, Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
A member of the Shabat family inspects damages upon returning to the family house, destroyed by Israeli strikes in the town of Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Overview of a tunnel built underground by Hamas militants leading from the Gaza Strip into Southern Israel, seen on August 4, 2014 near the Israeli Gaza border, Israel. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Reserve soldiers are seen on the top of an armored personnel carrier: Israeli military has announced the withdrawal of all its ground forces to defensive positions
A Palestinian elderly woman walks on the rubble of her destroyed house hit by an Israeli strike in Beit Lahiya, in the northern Gaza Strip, Monday, Aug. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinian medics try to revive Raghad Masoud, 34 months, who was injured in an Israeli strike, at the Kuwaiti hospital at Rafah refugee camp, in southern Gaza Strip, Monday, Aug. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians walk in front of destroyed buildings hit by an Israeli strike in Beit Lahiya, in the northern Gaza Strip, Monday, Aug. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Israelis stand near a flipped bus at the scene of an attack in Jerusalem, Monday, Aug. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)
Palestinian mourners carry the bodies of members of the Najam family, killed overnight in an Israeli strike at the family house, during the funeral in Beit Lahiya, Gaza Strip, Monday, Aug, 4, 2014. Seven family members were killed in an Israeli strike on their home Sunday night and many more were wounded, a Palestinian health ministry official said. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians pass parts of a missile which destroyed the house of the Najam family in the Jebaliya refugee camp, Gaza Strip, Monday Aug, 4, 2014. Seven Najam family members were killed in an Israeli missile strike on their home Sunday night and many more were wounded, a health ministry official said. (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)
Relatives take the bodies of four Palestinians from the hospital for burial, in Beit Lahiya, Gaza Strip, Monday Aug, 4, 2014. The four were killed in an missile strike outside their homes, according to the relatives. (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)
Pro Palestinian supporters, who preferred to remain unnamed, wave Palestinian flags during a protest in Dealey Plaza, Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014, in Dallas . (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
A pro Palestine mural in Belfast as Loyalist and Republican groups take rival positions of support for Israel and Palestine during the current flare up in the conflict.
Israeli flags hang alongside Union flags and a UVF flag in Cluan Place, Belfast, as Loyalist and Republican groups take rival positions of support for Israel and Palestine during the current flare up in the conflict
Palestinian Nidal Abu Rjeilah, 30, leans over the blanket-covered corpse of his disabled sister Ghadeer, 17, in the southern Gaza village of Khuzaa on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Flag of Palestine projected onto the Houses of Parliament, Westminster, central London. Friday August 1, 2014.
Palestinians search for bodies at the rubble of the destroyed house for the Bayoumi family in the Nusseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A masked Palestinian kicks a burning tire during clashes following a protest against thewar oin the Gaza Strip, outside Ofer, an Israeli military prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
A Palestinians inspects the damage amidst rubble from destroyed houses in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian inspects a destroyed house, in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Israeli reserved soldiers direct a Merkava tank to cross a road in the southern Israel as it advances towards the Israel Gaza border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Israeli Merkava tanks drive in southern Israel as they advance towards the Israel Gaza border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Israeli reserved soldiers direct a Merkava tank to cross a road in the southern Israel as it advances towards the Israel Gaza border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Palestinians rush to inspect the damage of their houses caused by Israeli strikes in the village of Khuzaa, southern Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinian children wounded in Israeli shelling are treated in a hospital in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinian onlookers and motorists pause to inspect a bomb from the Israeli military lying unexploded on the main road in Deir el-Balah in the central Gaza Strip, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinian worshippers run to take cover when an Israeli strike hit the roof of a building across from Al Qassam mosque, where they were offering Friday prayer in Nusseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian relative salvages belongings from the rubble of the destroyed house of the Bayoumi family in the Nusseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians carry a lifeless body found under the rubble while people inspect the damage caused by Israeli strikes in the village of Khuzaa, southern Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians run for cover during clashes with Israeli soldiers following a protest against the war in the Gaza Strip, outside Ofer, an Israeli military prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
A Palestinian inspects a destroyed house in the Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians inspect the damage of their destroyed houses following Israeli strikes in the village of Khuzaa, southern Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians salvage belongings from the rubble of their destroyed house in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian holds a pet bird he salvaged from the rubble of a destroyed house, in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians search the rubble their home in Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A medic carries a Palestinian baby injured in Israeli shelling in a hospital in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinian Abir Wahdan, 39, left, and her husband Muhammed, inspect the rubble of what used to be their family house in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians carry their belongings after salvaging them from their destroyed houses in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian reacts as he walks in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian woman stands near the rubble of destroyed houses in the heavily bombed town of Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, close to the Israeli border, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Jewish protesters take part in a 'Stop the War Coalition' demonstration outside the Israeli Embassy on August 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Jewish protesters take part in a 'Stop the War Coalition' demonstration outside the Israeli Embassy on August 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Protesters take part in a 'Stop the War Coalition' demonstration outside the Israeli Embassy on August 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Palestinian Abdel Aziz Jendiyah, 4, stands in front of a six-story building, destroyed by an Israeli strike, adjacent to his family house, in the Sabra neighborhood of Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A displaced Palestinian boy, still inside a classroom, eats a snack at the Abu Hussein U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinian women rest at the Abu Hussein U.N. school, in the Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A boy looks through a hole on the wall made by the shelling at the Abu Hussein U.N. school in the Jebaliya refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. Some 3,300 Gazans seeking shelter from the fighting had been crowded into the U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp when it was hit by a series of Israeli artillery shells. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinian inspect damages of their home which caught on fire following an Israeli strike that hit the next-door Hamas movement's Al-Aqsa satellite TV station in Gaza City, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Israeli soldiers stand on top of a tank in a staging area near the Israel Gaza border, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Smoke rises after an Israeli strike hit the offices of the Hamas movement's Al-Aqsa satellite TV station, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A man shouts for help after two people were killed in an Israeli air strike on a van in Gaza City on Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian carries his daughter as they flee, following an Israeli airstrike on an apartment building in Rafah on Thursday, July 31, 2014. A woman was killed, as her husband was wounded in the apartment damaged by the strike, according to Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra. (AP Photo/Hatem Ali)
A Palestinian medic shouts for help in front of an apartment building on fire caused by an Israeli strike in Rafah on Thursday, July 31, 2014. A woman was killed, as her husband was wounded in the strike, according to Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra. (AP Photo/Hatem Ali)
Palestinian Heygar Jendiyah, left, points to where the family house kitchen once stood, partially destroyed by an Israeli strike earlier during the war, as her children Ranin, 10, center, and Helmi, right, listen, in the Sabra neighborhood of Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Banner hangs from Westminster Bridge, London, by campaigners who are demanding an end to UK arms sales to Israel
A Palestinian stands on the rubble of what used to be the house belonging to Muhammed Jmasy family. Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke rises after an Israeli strike hit Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, July 31, 2014. Israel said Thursday it has called up another 16,000 reservists (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke rises after an Israeli strike hit Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Thursday, July 31, 2014. Israel said Thursday it has called up another 16,000 reservists (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
An injured Palestinian receives treatment at Nasser hospital following an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Ali)
Palestinian freelance photographer Motaz Al Salhy, center, accompanied by colleagues, cries as he holds the bloodied helmet of his friend, freelance cameraman Rami Rayan, who was killed while working, in an Israeli strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood outside the morgue of Gaza City's Shifa hospital, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians injured from an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, wait to receive treatment, at the emergency room of Shifa Hospital, in Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians grieve over the bodies of their relatives killed in an Israeli strike at a U.N. school in the Jebaliya refugee camp, at the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians carry a man on a strecher to an ambulance following an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, eastern Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians help carry injured men following an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, eastern Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians help an injured man following an Israeli Strike in the Shijaiyah neighborhood, eastern Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian worker inspects the damage of a destroyed carton factory after it was hit in an Israeli air strike in the Nusseirat refugee camp, in the central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian weeps as he attends the bodies of Shaher al-Najar and his brother Bassem, killed in an Israeli strike, at the family house during the funeral in the Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
An Israeli forces flare lights up the sky of eastern Gaza City, early Wednesday, July 30, 2014, amid Israel's heaviest air and artillery assault in more than three weeks of Israel-Hamas fighting. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Israeli reserve soldiers rest at a stop near the Israel Gaza border after fighting in Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Israeli reserve soldiers return to Israel after fighting in Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip, as walking on a road near the Israel Gaza border on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Palestinians carry bodies of 10 members of the Al Astal immediate and extended family, killed by an Israeli strike early at their houses, during their funeral in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinians prepare the bodies to pray over white coffin-draped bodies of ten members of the Al Astal immediate and extended family, killed by an Israeli strike early at their houses, during their funeral in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinians inspect damage to adjacent houses from a fallen minaret of the Al-Sousi mosque that was destroyed in an Israel strike, at the Shati refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinian Ismail Radwan, 45, inspects the damage to his family apartment caused by a fallen minaret of the Al-Sousi mosque, that was destroyed in an Israel strike, at Shati refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014.(AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian inspects damage to adjacent houses from a fallen minaret of the Al-Sousi mosque that was destroyed in an Israel strike, at the Shati refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke rises from Al Zafer tower apartment damaged by an Israeli strike in Gaza City in the northern Gaza Strip on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians help a man wounded as they walk over the rubble of destroyed buildings following an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinians help a woman overcome by emotion during the funeral of Shaher al-Najar, left, and his brother Bassem al-Najar, right, killed in an Israeli strike, at the family house in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian man grieves the death of his relative following an Israeli strike at a U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp, at the Kamal Adwan Hospital in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians look at donkeys killed and wounded, by an Israeli strike earlier, at and around the adjacent Abu Hussein U.N. school, seen background, in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian man shows a pool of blood where Shaher al-Najar and his brother Bassem al-Najar were killed by an Israeli strike, while sleeping at the family house in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian boy weeps next to the body of Bassem al-Najar, killed in an Israeli strike, at the family house during the funeral in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians cry around the bodies of Shaher al-Najar, left, and his brother Bassem al-Najar, right, killed in an Israeli strike, at the family house during their funeral in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian girl carries belongings as she and her family leave the Abu Hussein U.N. school in the Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, hit by an Israeli strike earlier, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Smoke rises in the sky following Israeli strikes on eastern Gaza City, early Wednesday, July 30, 2014, amid Israel's heaviest air and artillery assault in more than three weeks of Israel-Hamas fighting. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A Palestinian man rests after receiving treatment for injuries caused by an Israeli strike at a U.N. school in the Jebaliya refugee camp, at the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A Palestinian man leaves the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya after receiving treatment for his wounds caused by an Israeli strike at a UN school in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A Palestinian boy cries while receiving treatment for injuries caused by an Israeli strike at a U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp, at the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinian mourners carry the bloodied bag with the body of their loved one, killed in an Israeli strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, out of the morgue of Gaza City's Shifa hospital, during the funeral, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Injured Palestinians lay on the ground following an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, eastern Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A South Korean student displays a message during a rally against the Israeli military operations in Gaza and the West Bank and wishes for peace near the Israeli Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)
A mural on the Falls Road, Belfast, calling for the 'Immediate Expulsion of All Israeli Diplomats from Eire' Picture date: Wednesday July 30, 2014.Photo: Brian Lawless/PA
A mural on the Falls Road, Belfast, calling for the 'Immediate Expulsion of All Israeli Diplomats from Eire' Picture date: Wednesday July 30, 2014.Photo: Brian Lawless/PA
Protesters against military action in Gaza during a demonstration in Bristo Square, Edinburgh
A Palestinian relative helps a wounded woman following an Israeli air strike on a building in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Wednesday, July 30, 2014.(AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinians collect body parts in a classroom at the Abu Hussein U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, hit by an Israeli strike earlier, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian man rushes a child, injured from an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, to an emergency room at Shifa Hospital, in Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinians help carry injured men following an Israeli Strike in Shijaiyah neighborhood, eastern Gaza City, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians gather outside a classroom at the Abu Hussein U.N. school in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, hit by an Israeli strike earlier, on Wednesday, July 30, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians inspect the damage at the Ameen mosque in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, destroyed by an Israeli strike, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke and fire from the explosion of an Israeli strike rise over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A United Nations aid agency car lies destroyed by shrapnel from an Israeli strike in the Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. UN aid agency worker Mounir Haggar and his brother Bassir who were in the car were killed and Mounir's son Ibrahim, 12, was wounded, according to the UN. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians gather around a United Nations aid agency car that was damaged by shrapnel from an Israeli strike, in the Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians inspect the damage at the Ameen mosque in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, destroyed by an Israeli strike, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
In this image taken from video an explosion hits the media complex that houses the offices of Hamas-run Al Aqsa television and radio in central Gaza City early on Tuesday, July 29, 2014. The building also houses offices of a number of Arab satellite television news channels. (AP Photo/APTN)
Smoke from the explosion of an Israeli strike rises over a UN school at Jebaliya refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, where Palestinian displaced people had found refuge, on Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian, relative of a person killed in an Israeli strike in Jebaliya refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, cries as he walks during the funeral in Beit Lahiya, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
An Israeli reserve soldier gives the victory sign before entering the Gaza Strip near the Israel Gaza border, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Damaged Hamas prime minister's office is seen following Israeli strikes in Gaza City, in the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A Palestinian worker carries a mattress from a destroyed carton factory after it was hit in an Israeli air strike in the Nusseirat refugee camp, in the central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Smoke and fire from the explosion of an Israeli strike rise over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke from the explosion of an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke and flames rise from the Gaza power plant after it was hit by Israeli strikes, in the Nusseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip,Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Smoke rises from an Israeli strike in Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke rises from an Israeli strike in Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian from a damaged neighbouring apartment building inspects the damage of the offices of the Hamas movement's Al-Aqsa satellite TV station, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, destroyed by an Israeli strike, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke from the explosion of an Israeli strike rise over Gaza City, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke and flames rise from a burning fuel tank of Gaza's only power plant after it was hit by Israeli strikes in the Nusseirat Refugee Camp, central Gaza Strip,Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian from a neighbouring apartment building inspects the damage of the offices of the Hamas movement's Al-Aqsa satellite TV station, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, destroyed by an Israeli strike, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
US Secretary of State John Kerry answers questions about Israel's invasion of Gaza and the current situation in Ukraine following a meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin at the State Department July 29, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Seen from Gaza City, smoke and flames rise from Gaza's electricity distribution company plant after it was hit by Israeli strikes in the Nusseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip,Tuesday, July 29, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke rises from the offices of the Hamas movement's Al-Aqsa satellite TV station, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, shortly after was hit and destroyed by an Israeli strike, Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
A Palestinian walks on the rubble of the house of the top Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, hit by a pre-dawn Israeli strike, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, July 29, 2014 (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Israeli forces' flares light up the night sky of Gaza City on early Tuesday, July 29, 2014. A truce between Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza remained elusive as diplomats sought to end the fighting at the start of the Eid al-Fitr holiday, marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Smoke raises in the air following Israeli shelling in Gaza City on early Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinian relatives comfort each other in front of the morgue of Shifa hospital following an explosion that killed 10 people, nine of them children at a park at Shati refugee camp, in Gaza city, in the northern Gaza Strip, Monday, July 28, 2014 (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
An Israeli reserve soldier makes a wall with the Star of David from cardboard mortar shell boxes near the Israel Gaza border, Monday, July 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Israeli forces' flares light up the night sky of Gaza City on early Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Israeli forces' flares light up the night sky of Gaza City on early Tuesday, July 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Israeli forces flares light up the night sky in the east of Gaza City on Monday, July 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Israeli soldiers sleep on the top of a tank near the Israel Gaza border, Monday, July 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Palestinian relatives cry when mourners carry out the body of Gamal Ielian, 10, who was killed along with 9 other people, all but one of them children, in an explosion at a park at the Shati refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip, Monday, July 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Demonstrators show their support during a pro-Israel rally on July 28, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
A pro-Israeli demonstrator faces a group of Pro-Palestine demonstrators who staged a counter-demonstration across the street from a pro-Israel rally on July 28, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
People take part in a rally in support of Israel near the United Nations Headquarters on July 28, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Used artillery shells litter the ground on the morning of July 28, 2014 near Kafar Azza, Israel. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over the northern Gaza Strip on Sunday, July 27 (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A member of the foreign media, left, cries as she embraces her Palestinian news assistant, right, who burst into tears after discovering his family house was destroyed by Israeli strikes in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A Palestinian doctor treats 3-day-old Shaymaa al-Sheikh Ali at Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis, in the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Palestinians carry the coffin of Christian woman Jalila Ayyad, 70, who was killed by an Israeli strike hit that destroyed her house, during her funeral at a church in Gaza City, Sunday, July 27, 2014.(AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A female protester against military action in Gaza wears a 'Silence is injustice' sign as she marches through Westminster, central London. Picture date: Saturday July 26, 2014.
Supporters of Israel are reflected in a mirror built on the Old Port during a demonstration in Marseille, southern France, Sunday, July 27, 2014 (AP Photo/Claude Paris)
Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over a building in Gaza City in the northern Gaza Strip on Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Israeli left wing activists light candles with shape of the word "Sorry" in Hebrew and place portraits on the ground of Israelis and Palestinians who have been killed in the conflict, during a demonstration against the Gaza war, in Tel Aviv, Israel, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Dan Balilty)
Supporters of Israel wave flags and shout slogans during a demonstration in Marseille, southern France, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Claude Paris)
A Palestinian man walks by buildings heavily damaged by Israeli strikes in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians walk amid the rubble of houses destroyed by Israeli strikes in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Damage from Israeli strikes leaves a room in the children's ward scattered with debris, at a hospital in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke from Israeli strikes rises over Gaza City, in the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinians inspect the rubble of a destroyed house following an Israeli strike killing Christian woman Jalila Ayyad, 70, in Gaza City on Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
An Israeli tank fires towards Gaza, near the Israel and Gaza border in the morning of Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
A Palestinian child who was injured in the war in Gaza gives the victory sign as he is prepared to be moved by ambulance from a hospital in north Sinai to Cairo after crossing the Gaza Egypt border Saturday, in el-Arish, 290 kilometers (180 miles) east of Cairo, Egypt, early Sunday, July 27, 2014.(AP Photo/Muhamed Sabry)
A news cameraman films at a live position as in the background smoke rises from an Israeli strike in Gaza City, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Smoke from Israeli strikes rises over Gaza City, in the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Smoke from Israeli strikes rises over Gaza City, in the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Pro-Palestinian protesters run amid tear gas canisters, as clashes erupted at Place de La Republique during a banned demonstration in support of Gaza, in Paris, France, Saturday, July 26, 2014 (AP Photo/Francois Mori )
A Palestinian supporter yells at opposing Israeli supporters as hundreds protest the war between Israel and Hamas members in the Gaza Strip in Toronto on Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Darren Calabrese)
Israeli soldiers pray near the Israeli Gaza border as the 24 hour ceasefire begins on July 27, 2014 on the Israeli/Gaza border, Israel. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
sraeli soldiers pray near the Israeli Gaza border as the 24 hour ceasefire begins on July 27, 2014 on the Israeli/Gaza border, Israel. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers pray near the Israeli Gaza border as the 24 hour ceasefire begins on July 27, 2014 on the Israeli/Gaza border, Israel. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Smoke rises from Gaza Strip after Israeli shelling moment before the 24 hour ceasefire on July 27, 2014 on the Israeli/Gaza border(Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Israeli strikes in Gaza are seen after a ceasefire failed on July 27, 2014 near Sderot, Israel. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
An Israeli tank fires artillery shells after a ceasefire failed on July 27, 2014 near Sderot, Israel (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Left wing Israelis take part in a protest against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip on July 26, 2014 in Tel Aviv, Israel. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
Protesters take part in a 'Stop the War' demonstration march from the Israeli Embassy to the Houses of Parliament on July 26, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Protesters take part in a 'Stop the War' demonstration march from the Israeli Embassy to the Houses of Parliament on July 26, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Orthodox Jews show their support for peace in Gaza as they attend a 'Stop the War' demonstration in Parliament Square on July 26, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Protesters take part in a 'Stop the War' demonstration march from the Israeli Embassy to the Houses of Parliament on July 26, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
In this Thursday, July 24, 2014 photo, Nema Abu al-Foul, 2 , who was injured while playing with others in front of her family's house in the Al-Sabra neighborhood of Gaza City in an Israeli missile strike on July 19, recovers at Shifa hospital. The strike hit a nearby building, breaking her nose and fracturing her skull, her family said. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
A Palestinian man cries after bringing a child, wounded in an Israeli strike on a compound housing a U.N. school in Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, to the emergency room of the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, Thursday, July 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians inspect the damage of their destroyed houses during a 12-hour cease-fire in Gaza City's Shijaiyah neighborhood, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Smoke rises from a vehicle, destroyed by an Israeli strike, after Palestinian fire fighters put out the fire, in Gaza City, early Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinians carry their belongings through rubble of houses destroyed by Israeli strikes, as they visit the area during a 12-hour cease-fire in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Israeli soldiers seen working on a tank near the Israeli-Gaza border on July 25, 2014 near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Palestinians sit on debris after seeing their homes destroyed in Israel's military operation on Gaza, during a 12-hour cease-fire in Gaza City's Shijaiyah neighborhood, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
An Israeli soldier seen carrying tank ammo near the Israeli-Gaza border on July 25, 2014 near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers gather by flames created from a Molotov cocktail thrown by Palestinians during clashes in Hawara village near the West Bank city of Nablus on Friday, July 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Nasser Ishtayeh)
A member of the media holds his arm after being injured while covering Palestinian supporters of Hamas clash with Israeli security forces on July 25, 2014 near Ramallah, West Bank. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers seen carrying tank ammo near the Israeli-Gaza border on July 25, 2014 near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Palestinians on the rubble of a home destroyed by an Israeli strike in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Friday, July 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinian children carry drinking water to their homes in the Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, Friday, July 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinian children, wounded in an Israeli strike on a compound housing a U.N. school in Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, are treated as they lay on the floor at the emergency room of the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, Thursday, July 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
A woman supporter of Jamaat-e-Islami takes part in a demonstration against the Israeli bombings in the Gaza strip, in Islamabad, Pakistan, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Anjum Naveed)
A Palestinian woman reacts after seeing her destroyed house during a 12-hour cease-fire in Gaza City's Shijaiyah neighborhood, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Palestinian supporters of Hamas take shelter while clashing with Israeli security forces on July 25, 2014 near Ramallah, West Bank. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Palestinian supporters of Hamas clash with Israeli security forces on July 25, 2014 near Ramallah, West Bank. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

"Israel will take all necessary steps against those who call for our destruction and perpetrate terrorism against our citizens," he said.

Mr Obama said he would continue working towards a ceasefire and called on Israel to take steps to prevent Palestinian civilian casualties, saying: "Innocent civilians caught in the crossfire have to weigh on our conscience, and we have to do more."

Labour leader Ed Miliband said that David Cameron had put himself "in the wrong place" over Gaza by failing to make clear to Israel from the outset that its incursion would not resolve its problems with rocket attacks launched by Hamas from the territory.

Mr Miliband told LBC radio: "If I was David Cameron... I would be spending my time on doing everything I can to put pressure on both sides to have that ceasefire that is required.

"I think he is in the wrong place on this, because I agree with him about Hamas - Hamas is a terrible and disgusting organisation - but I think he should have said from the outset that this incursion by Israel into Gaza was not going to solve the problem. It isn't solving the problem, it's making it worse.

Meanwhile, Mr Miliband's brother David, the former foreign secretary and president of the International Rescue refugee charity, said that the focus of attention should be on the 1.8 million civilians in Gaza trapped inside a war zone.

Asked if Israel's deployment of military force had been "disproportionate", David Miliband told BBC2's Newsnight: "Of course. Eighty per cent of the casualties in this war have been civilians, and as the leader of a humanitarian movement, I have to defend the principle that after centuries in which civilians were caught in the crossfire of war, finally in 1949 the Geneva Convention established the absolute right to defence for civilians during war, and that is being broached.

"The heartbreaking, the heart-rending situation which faces the people of Gaza tonight is that 1.8 million of them are trapped in an area where frankly there is no safe zone, and that is completely contrary to every basic fibre of being that anyone can understand or uphold."

Official data obtained by the Campaign Against Arms Trade under the Freedom of Information Act showed that of the £42 million "military list" exports to Israel approved since 2010, some £10 million were licensed in the last 12 months.

Among manufacturers given permission to make sales were UK companies making components for the Hermes drone aircraft and Israel's main battle tank, reported The Independent. The sales are entirely lawful and make up part of a £12 billion British arms export trade.

Andrew Smith, of CAAT, told the newspaper: "There must be an immediate embargo on all arms sales and military collaboration with Israel. When governments sell weapons into war zones they cannot absolve themselves of responsibility for what happens when they are used."

And Labour MP Katy Clark said that ministers must establish whether any of the weapons or components have been used in Gaza, adding: "By refusing to investigate this vital question the British Government are trying to bury their heads in the sand. This is a shameful approach to take and frankly makes the Government look as if it has something to hide.

"The British public have the right to know the level of support which the United Kingdom has provided to the Israeli armed forces through arms sales."

A government spokesman said: "We are currently reviewing all existing export licences to Israel. All applications for export licences are assessed on a case by case basis against strict criteria. We will not issue a licence if there is a clear risk that the equipment might be used for internal repression, or if there is a clear risk that it would provoke or prolong conflict."

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