UK Foreign Office minister announces resignation on Twitter over UK’s morally reprehensible stance on Gaza
August 5, 2014
Sayeeda Warsi, the senior Foreign Office minister, has resigned from the government in protest at its policy on Gaza, describing it as “morally indefensible”.
Lady Warsi announced her departure on Twitter on Tuesday, saying: “With deep regret I have this morning written to the Prime Minister & tendered my resignation. I can no longer support Govt policy on #Gaza.”
In her resignation letter, Warsi said the government’s “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”.
She said the UK’s stance was “not consistent with the rule of law and our long support for international justice”, adding: “The British government can only play a constructive role in solving the Middle East crisis if it is an honest broker and at the moment I do not think it is.”
Following criticism about the timing of her resignation – on the 29th day of the conflict and after a ceasefire had been announced – Warsi spoke to the BBC to say: “Over the last four weeks, I have done everything that I can both at formal meetings and informal meetings trying to convince my colleagues that our current policy on Gaza is morally indefensible, that it’s not in our interests, it’s not in British interests and that it will have consequences for us both internationally and here at home.
“In the end, for us I felt the government’s position was not moving and therefore I had to on a point of principle resign.”
Warsi became the first Muslim to sit in the cabinet when she was made Conservative party co-chair by Cameron after the 2010 general election. She was subsequently moved to the post of minister of state at the Foreign Office and minister for faith and communities in the prime minister’s 2012 reshuffle – a move widely regarded as a demotion.