April 2024: News from MP Thangam Debbonaire

Voting for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza

In February I tabled a motion in Parliament with my Labour colleagues calling for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, one that lasts and is observed by all sides. It was unanimously agreed and passed. You and I have found the events in Gaza horrifying.  

The fighting and unimaginable suffering of the Palestinian people must stop, aid must get in urgently and the hostages kidnapped by Hamas returned to their families. Most importantly there needs to be a path to long term sustainable peace in the region.

This is why our Parliamentary motion called for rapid and unimpeded humanitarian relief, an end to settlement expansion and settler violence and a political process towards a two-state solution. A safe and secure Israel alongside a sovereign and viable Palestinian state is the only path to a just and lasting peace. A ceasefire needs a process to peace if it is to be sustainable.

You can read more about the ceasefire motion on my website.

More tragic knife crimes in Bristol

Bristol has seen a series of  knife attacks in the last few months, leading to tragic loss of life. My heart goes out to the families and friends of the victims and I always make sure they are aware I’m here for any practical support they may need from me. Our city is not an anomaly. Knife crime is up by 70% across the UK since 2015. Labour has a plan to end knife crime. 

Prevention comes first: we need to tackle the causes of knife crime early. A Labour government will have a targeted programme in every area to identify the young people most at risk with support tailored to their needs – including youth workers, youth hubs and mental support in schools. We will also bring in stronger laws to crack down on knife sales.

I have been in regular contact with the local police after each incident and support their plan for “much more high-profile proactive operation”.

Presenting the girls football team at Hotwells Primary with their new Premier League kit

It was a pleasure to visit Hotwells Primary School and present the Year 6 girls’ team with their new kit, sponsored by the Premier League as part of their initiative to provide support for grassroots women’s football. 

If I become the next Secretary of State for Media, Culture and Sport, I will be a champion to get more girls’ team sports like football as well as all kinds of physical activity. I brought with me representatives of the Premier League and the actual Premier League trophy – an exciting moment for all!