Mike Gapes confirms his continued membership of LFI

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From: Paul de Rooij
Sent: 02 August 2006 14:01
To: GAPES, Michael
Subject: question re: Israel

Dear Mr. Gapes;

I understand that you are a member of the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) organization. I wonder if you are still a member of it, and if so how you justify it. Haven't the (1) Israeli war of aggression against Lebanon and (2) the continuing offensive against the Palestinians in Gaza made you reconsider your association with LFI? Since supporting Israel doesn’t mean supporting the right cause, I wonder if you will reconsider your association of this rather dubious group.

In advance, thanks
Paul de Rooij

Mike Gapes' reply:

From: GAPES, Michael
To: Paul de Rooij
Sent: August 16, 2006 22:01
Subject: Israel,Palestine and Lebanon

Dear Mr de Rooij

Thank you for your message. I was abroad when you sent your email and have only just seen it. Yes I am a member of both the Labour Middle East Council and the Labour Friends of Israel and as a consistent supporter of a two state solution I see no need to change my affiliations.

I have been actively involved in discussions and debates on ways to stop the conflict and its awful humanitarian consequences. I enclose a copy of the speech I made in the House of Commons in July which refers to my meetings with a number of representatives of Arab governments, Israeli and Palestinian diplomats and with the new Iranian ambassador where we also discussed the crisis and ways to resolve it.

I can assure you that I pressed our own Government and representatives of all governments in the region to work for an end to the cycle of violence, for a mutual ceasefire and cessation of hostilities and for a process of dialogue and negotiation. I am therefore delighted that the UN has now agreed Security Council Resolution 1701. This must now be implemented in full by all parties to the conflict.

Thank you for writing to me,
Best wishes
Mike Gapes MP
Ilford South