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Feb 14th, 2024

Families stuck in Gaza

By Robin Priestley

Rafah, a city where over one million people have fled to shelter from the war in Gaza is under attack. Described initially as a ‘safe zone’, the Government of Israel has now announced they will launch a military offensive on the city.

For some families, Rafah was their last resort. It is the only open point for aid to get into Gaza and the only way out for those with money or the right legal documents. The escalation of fighting could mean an end to their last remaining hope.

This decision has sparked an outcry with numerous world leaders speaking out against this latest move. The UK Government is “deeply concerned” and even the US President, Joe Biden, has called for these plans to be halted immediately. But, we need actions not words. We need an immediate ceasefire that would end this.

Alongside the ceasefire, the UK could offer the families of many Palestinians living in the UK who have been sheltering in Rafah a route to safety under the “right to family reunion”. Rishi Sunak has been questioned multiple times by charities and leaders, about a possible fast track scheme, similar to the option given to Ukrainians, but the Government has yet to give a straight answer.

Will you email your MP asking them to do everything they can to make sure the Government does their duty and help get families to safety before it’s too late?

Don’t worry if you’ve never emailed your MP before – here are a few suggestions on what you could say:

  • Highlight that Rafah was designated a ‘safe zone’ so there are many civilians and families stuck there.
  • Remind your MP that family unity is a human right so refugees and families have a right to this process.
  • Mention how the UK rightfully helped innocent civilians before with the Ukraine Visa scheme.
  • The situation in Rafah and Gaza is getting worse so time is of the essence.
  • Remember to be polite! The person reading your email is another human being, and they may already agree with you. It’s important we treat one another with respect!

The situation in Rafah could get worse any day and we can help make this situation better, but the Government will only do it if they hear from us.

Email your MP now asking them to pressure the Government to offer a sanctuary to families and children trapped in Rafah.

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