PARLIAMENT must be given the ability to scrutinise British arms sales to Israel amid mounting fears a genocide is taking place in Palestine, according to an SNP MP.

Chris Law, the SNP’s international development spokesperson, has demanded that MPs be allowed to investigate UK weapon exports in light of Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.

He said that “given the grave and urgent nature of events in Gaza, and the plausible risk of genocide” Liam Byrne (below), the chair of the Business and Trade committee, should launch an inquiry into UK arms exports to Israel.

The National: Labour MP Liam Byrne (Chris McAndrew/UK Parliament/PA)

Byrne’s committee was given responsibility for scrutinising the Government’s regulation of arms exports – after a previous committee on the issue was abandoned in January.

There is deep concern from anti-arms trade campaigners about the lack of dedicated parliamentary scrutiny of the UK’s export controls regime.

In a letter to Byrne seen by The National, Law (below) said: “It is imperative that the UK upholds its moral and legal responsibilities and is in no way complicit in serious violations of international law, including attacks that may amount to war crimes and plausibly amount to genocide.

The National: Chris Law MP

“We as members of the House of Commons, must be allowed to use the voices afforded to us, to ensure that the UK Government is not doing this through the supply of arms to Israel, as a matter of urgency.”

Law told this paper he believed arms sales to Israel must end “immediately”.

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He said: “The UK Government must cease its blatant hypocrisy when it speaks of the horrors in Gaza, whilst at the same time selling the weapons to Israel that it uses to kill civilians.

“The decision to stop the ongoing suffering of the Palestinian people in Gaza is in the hands of the countries that supply Israel with weapons, and UK arms export licences to Israel must therefore be revoked immediately.”

He highlighted concerns raised by Foreign Office officials about Israel’s campaign in Gaza – which has so far seen more than 30,000 Palestinians killed.

Law added: “Despite internal Foreign Office legal advice being unable to conclude that Israel is in compliance with international law, and despite the International Court of Justice ruling that there is a plausible risk of genocide, Kemi Badenoch and Lord Cameron have so far refused to end the UK's participation in the ongoing disaster in Gaza by immediately halting arms exports to Israel.

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“If they are comfortable with this, and the potential of the UK being complicit in breaches of international law and genocide, they must be able to justify and provide full transparency in their decision-making to a committee of MPs.”

Byrne declined to comment.

The Department for Business and Trade maintains that Britain operates “of the most robust export controls in the world”.