UK charities call for safe passage for Palestinian and Israeli refugees

A group of British charities have called on the Government to provide safe passage for refugees fleeing from Israel and Palestine.

Organisations including the Refugee Council, Safe Passage International, Doctors of the World, Helen Bamber Foundation, and City of Sanctuary have raised concerns about the conflict worsening the Palestinian refugee crisis.

They have created a list of emergency measures the Government can put in place, including medical evacuation for people in need of specialist care, an emergency family reunion scheme, an emergency refugee protection visa, and facilitated travel for UK nationals and those with the right to enter the UK.

The groups have also called on the Government to prioritise cases of Israelis and Palestinians already in the UK asylum system.

Enver Solomon, chief executive of the Refugee Council, said that the UK must be ready to play a role in the refugee crisis.

“As the conflict worsens the number of Palestinian men, women and children displaced and those facing grave danger will only increase,” he said.

“People who aren’t secure and safe in their homes need access to safety and the UK must be ready to play a role by implementing a package of emergency measures at short notice.”

He said that the UK should create a standardised asylum system, instead of the “ad hoc and inconsistent” approach it has had to refugees from recent major conflicts.

Mr Solomon added: “At the same time it is vital that the right to asylum is up held for those who, through no fault of their own, have to take dangerous journeys to the UK as well as expanding safe routes including an ambitious multi-year resettlement commitment, wider family reunion pathways, and the piloting of a refugee visa.”