SDLP Calls For New Palestinian Visa Scheme

The SDLP has called for the introduction of a Palestinian Visa Scheme to help thousands of displaced people in the region.

East Derry MLA Cara Hunter asked First Minister Michelle O'Neill if she would begin making preparations with the Home Office for a resettlement scheme as soon as it is possible to provide safe passage for people who have been left with nothing in Gaza.

The East Derry MLA has also written to Executive Office officials to commit to a scheme.
News Image
Ms Hunter said: "The horrific scenes of violence from Gaza have shocked the world. A genocide is being inflicted on the Palestinian people, many of whom have lost everything, their homes, all of their worldly possessions and in many cases their families and loved ones. Anyone who can help has a duty to do so and the SDLP has been standing in solidarity with the Palestinian people long before the outbreak of this conflict.

"I understand the practical difficulties around providing safe passage for people in Gaza who are living in what's tantamount to a prison camp, under constant bombardment. However, the Executive Office must begin to explore options now and work with the Home Office to put a Palestinian Visa Scheme in place so that those who need to leave are able to do so quickly.

"Every day the calls for a ceasefire in the Middle East are growing louder, with more and more world leaders adding their names to those demanding a peaceful solution in the region. When a ceasefire is reached, the North and the rest of these islands need to be ready to play our part and offer asylum and refuge to Palestinians in their hour of need."

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

22 March 2024
Richard Pengelly Appointment 'Raises A Number Of Questions' – SDLP
The SDLP Opposition at Stormont has said that the appointment of Richard Pengelly as Chief Executive of the Education Authority "raised a number of questions". Mr Pengelly, who has been working as Permanent Secretary at the Department of Justice, was appointed to the new role on Thursday 21 March, by Education Minister Paul Givan.
27 March 2024
SDLP Calls For Urgent Restoration Of North South Ministerial Council
The SDLP has called for the urgent restoration of the North South Ministerial Council (NSMC), which it said is needed to advance all-island cooperation following the restoration of the Stormont government earlier this year.
01 November 2011
Palestine's UNESCO Membership 'Milestone'
Sinn Fein has called the announcement that Palestine's would take membership of UNESCO a 'milestone towards freedom for the Palestinian people'.
14 February 2024
HMRC Warns Of Bogus Tax Refund Offers
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has issued a warning to Self Assessment tax customers of bogus tax refund offers. HMRC has warned that fraudsters could set their sights on Self Assessment customers, with more than 11.5 million submitting a tax return by last month's deadline.
08 March 2024
Additional £3m Announced For Supporting People Programme
An additional £3 million in funding for the Supporting People programme, which aims to the quality of life for vulnerable people through appropriate housing-related services, has been announced by Communities Minister Gordon Lyons.