Israel and the peace process debate

Neil Parish calls on the Government to make sure that they are fair in their dealings with Israel and the whole region and that there is a two-state solution and a state of Israel.Neil Parish (Tiverton and Honiton) (Con): It is a great pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Walker, and I thank the hon. Member for Barrow and Furness (John Woodcock) for securing the debate.Ever since the state of Israel was set up it has been under attack, and all of us in the Chamber can agree that there should be a state of Israel. We represent constituencies all over the country, but I suggest that someone who represented a constituency into which rockets were fired daily would want to take pretty strong action.We all accept that there are faults on both sides. However, given the constant pressure from virtually all Israel’s neighbours, and the fact that the Iranians say that Israel must be wiped off the face of the earth, it is necessary to keep a strong, powerful Israeli Government, to try to contain what could happen. Iran is a huge threat not only to the Israelis but to the whole region. I suspect that many of its Arab neighbours are just as frightened of Iran as Israel is. That key matter will need to be sorted out in the future, but I will not go into it now.It is right for us to have this debate, but we must deal with it in a commensurate manner. We must accept that Israel will retaliate when it is attacked. We may sometimes believe that it over-reacts, but if we were facing such attacks we would probably react in a similar way. In the end, the only way peace will break out in that part of the world is through prosperity and trade. While hostile acts take place, that will not happen. I know that the Israeli President is keen on creating greater trade in the region, but that is a huge problem with the security situation as it is.We believe in a two-state solution, but that will be difficult to achieve if Hamas and other organisations will not come to the negotiating table. I ask our Ministers and Government not only to take a strong position in the region and to give Israel good advice when she needs it, but to make sure that they are fair in their dealings with Israel and the whole region and that there is a two-state solution and a state of Israel.3.30 pm| Hansard