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4 I LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS Passion Islam I March 2010
UK continues arms sales to
Israel despite Gaza massacres
Britain is continuing to sell a wide range
of military equipment to the Zionist
regime, despite last year’s massacre
of more than 1,400 Palestinians in
Gaza.
After the attack on Gaza, Foreign
Secretary David Miliband told
parliament that all future applications
for arms-related exports to Israel “will
be assessed taking into account the
recent conflict”.
But the latest official figures show
that UK government approved almost
£4m worth of export licences for
weapons and equipment, including
small arms ammunition and parts for
sniper rifles in first nine months of
2009.
Most of the equipment approved
for sale to the Zionst regime were
components for large military items, Yasmin Khan of War on Want. “The control against surface targets, and
such as parts for ground-based radars, UK government remains complicit armoured personnel carriers adapted
military aircraft engines, military in Israel’s human rights violations from Centurion tanks sold to Israel in
aircraft navigation equipment, military unless it prohibits the sale of all arms the late 1950s.
communications and unmanned to Israel,” Khan told IRNA. When questioned by parliament’s
drones. Approved exports sales also include strategic export controls committee
The continuing exports have electronic warfare equipment, ground last month, Foreign Office minister for
been condemned by the anti-poverty vehicle military communications the Middle East Ivan Lewis insisted
campaigning organisation, War on equipment and remote ground-sensor that the government considered arms
Want, which has called for a two- systems. exports to Israel on a “case-by-case
way arms embargo between Britain Last year, Miliband admitted that basis”.
and Israel since the 2006 invasion of Israeli equipment used in the attack Britain’s official guidelines for arms
Lebanon. on Gaza “almost certainly” contained exports stipulate that arms sales
“The licensing of arms sales to British-supplied components included should not be approved “where there
Israel flies in the face of the UK’s arms components for US F16 combat is a clear risk that the export might be
export guidelines, which prohibit the aircraft, and Apache helicopters. They used for internal repression” or where
sale of military equipment that could also included equipment for radar on they would “provoke or prolong armed
be used for internal repression,” said Israeli ships that could be used for fire- conflicts”.
Ethnic minority communities
unaware of state pension changes
Nearly three quarters of Brits from British Pakistanis and 219,000 British Reforms also mean new credits for
an ethnic minority background are Indians over 55 could now benefit parents and carers will be introduced
unaware of changes to the state when they retire. from April to ensure that people who
pension that could benefit them Findings show nearly a third - take time off work to care are able to
financially, according to a YouGov 31 per cent - of Brits from an ethnic build up qualifying years towards the
poll. minority background have taken time basic and State Second Pensions.
As the number of contributing years out of the workforce and more than one Those who fall into these groups
of National Insurance people need in 10 - 16 per cent - rely on a partner are being urged to visit www.direct.
to build up a full basic state pension financially – both of which may mean gov/betterfuture for more information
is reducing in April, statistics show they need to do something now to on the changes and advice on
29,000 British Bangladeshis, 91,000 boost their State Pension provision. planning for the future.
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