SHADOW foreign secretary David Lammy has been slammed after he told the BBC that an Israeli airstrike on a refugee camp “can be legally justified”.

It comes after Israel said the strike killed a senior Hamas commander, although it is understood there were more than 50 civilian casualties.

The shadow foreign secretary said the bombing was wrong "when it comes to the ethics," but insisted that "if there is a military objective it can be legally justifiable".

In response to Lammy’s comments, the Muslim Association of Britain said the senior Labour figure should be “ashamed” of himself.

The National:

Writing on Twitter/X, the group said: “@UKLabour has seemingly gone from thinking collective punishment and the cutting of food, water and fuel is acceptable to stating that it can be ‘legally justifiable’ to bomb a refugee camp.

“What utter moral depravity is this. You should be ashamed of yourself @DavidLammy.”

Speaking to The National, Stop the War Coalition convener Lindsey German said: “There is no legal justification for doing any of this and there certainly is no moral justification for doing it.

“Lammy was really squirming because he knows the majority of Labour supporters want a ceasefire, the majority of people in Britain want a ceasefire but he and Keir Starmer have tied themselves in knots saying there should be a humanitarian pause and not a ceasefire.

“He was actually speaking from Egypt and he will know the rage that is engulfing the Middle East about what’s happening to people in Gaza.

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“So it makes it even more reprehensible that he is saying this kind of thing.”

Asked about the wider implications this could have on the Labour Party, German said she thought it could be an “existential crisis”.

“They’ve been banking on getting a bit of support coming back in Scotland, doing well in England because the Tories are so unpopular but this whole position they’ve taken as blown a hole in their own support,” she said.

“We know loads of councillors have resigned and Starmer is just doubling down on this and it will cost him very dearly.”

Scottish Greens MSP Ross Greer (below) meanwhile told The National this represented a "new low" for Labour. 

The National:

"History will remember the disgraceful role that senior Labour politicians like Keir Starmer and David Lammy have played in sanitising, excusing and whitewashing Israel's war crimes and the collective punishment of two million people in Gaza," he said. 

"The bombing of vulnerable people in a refugee camp can never be justified. It is immoral and illegal and it is utterly shameful that Lammy, the man likely to be Britain's next foreign secretary, would use his position and his influence to suggest otherwise.

"Only yesterday Labour refused to back the growing international calls for a ceasefire. That kind of complicity can only lead to more war crimes, more atrocities and ultimately more deaths.

"All politicians must their influence to push for a lasting ceasefire and humanitarian corridors for medical aid and displaced people. It is shocking that the Labour leadership not only refuses these calls but actively defends the most horrendous war crimes currently being committed by Israel.

SNP MP Pete Wishart (below) said: “What has happened to these Labour politicians?”

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Elsewhere, Jonathon Shafi, who runs the Independence Captured newsletter, said on social media: “His [Lammy’s] comments are beneath contempt, and reveal an absence of basic humanity.”

It comes as Labour leader Keir Starmer continues to come under pressure over his refusal to back calls for a ceasefire in the Middle East.

Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf was among those to hit out at Starmer for his position, claiming he lacked “moral courage and leadership”.

In a post on Twitter/X on Tuesday evening, Yousaf said he was “sorry to those innocent men, women and children in Jabalia Refugee Camp that the world could not protect you”.

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“This blatant disregard for human life must be condemned unequivocally. Do not let any more children die. We need an immediate ceasefire, nothing less,” the First Minister said.

Many others also took to social media to express their disappointment with Lammy’s comments.

One user said they “would say I’m in shock but I’m not” while another said it was “outrageous and morally wrong”.

A third commented: “Labour’s handling of this is genuinely sickening.”