Sayeeda Warsi, British Minister, Resigns For Cabinet’s ‘Morally Indefensible’ Stance On Gaza

  @ThisIsPRop.ross@ibtimes.com on August 05 2014 4:46 PM
warsi
Britain's Minister of State at the Foreign Office, Sayeeda Warsi, leaves a cabinet meeting in London, March 4, 2014. Warsi resigned from her cabinet post on Tuesday, citing what she said is the government’s lax approach to the conflict between Israel and Hamas. Reuters

Britain’s first Muslim Cabinet member, Sayeeda Warsi, resigned Tuesday over the government’s “morally indefensible” response to the war between Israel and Hamas. Warsi, who had served as minister of faith since September 2012, took to Twitter to announce her resignation.  

Warsi’s resignation is seen as putting pressure on Prime Minister David Cameron to condemn Israel’s actions in Gaza. Many of Cameron’s political opponents, as well as members of his own Conservative Party, have criticized his government for not speaking out against the conflict, which has killed an estimated 1,865 Palestinians and 64 Israelis, according to Reuters.

“For some weeks, in meetings and discussions, I have been open and honest about my views on the conflict in Gaza and our response to it,” Warsi wrote in her resignation letter, which she also posted to Twitter. "Our approach and language during the current crisis in Gaza is morally indefensible, is not in Britain's national interest and will have a long term detrimental impact on our reputation internationally and domestically.”

Cameron released a statement following Warsi’s resignation, saying his Cabinet has “consistently called for an immediate and unconditional humanitarian cease-fire.”

“Israel has the right to defend itself,” Cameron said. “But we have consistently made clear our grave concerns about the heavy toll of civilian casualties and have called on Israel to exercise restraint." 

Warsi’s resignation came as Israel removed its ground forces from the Gaza Strip and began a 72-hour cease-fire with Hamas. The truce is seen as a first step toward both sides discussing a more permanent arrangement. 

Join the Discussion