THE SNP have written to UK party leaders, elected Mayors, and Scottish party leaders, to urge them to show support for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and Israel in a House of Commons vote next week.

Ahead of an SNP ceasefire amendment to the King's speech next Wednesday, its Westminster leader Stephen Flynn is calling on these leaders to publicly and privately urge Westminster MPs to listen to and act on "the overwhelming view of the public".

He added that support for a ceasefire is matched by support from the UN, and the international community - and warned "the only way to stop this humanitarian disaster, the only way to stop the killing of thousands more children, is to use all our influence to press for an immediate ceasefire".

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In the letter, which has gone to all party leaders at Westminster, Holyrood, Stormont, the Senedd, the Mayor of London and and other elected mayors, Flynn wrote:

"I am writing to inform you that the SNP Westminster group has placed an amendment to the King’s speech calling for the UK government to back an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and Israel. Given Westminster convention and our third-party status, we expect this amendment to be selected and voted on.

"Therefore, we fully anticipate that the vote on a ceasefire will take place on Wednesday 15th of November.

"It is now just over a month since Hamas launched its horrific terrorist attacks on the people of Israel. And a month on, I still don’t think the barbaric and brutal reality of those attacks has even begun to sink in. The viciousness of that violence and the taking of so many hostages was a crime against humanity that will embed itself into our collective memories for years to come.

"Equally though, the response and retaliation, the images of bombs raining down on the dense urban concrete of Gaza, a concrete city which is home to 2.2 million Palestinian people, and the subsequent large-scale loss of civilian life has been every bit as harrowing. The cutting off of electricity, of medical supplies and of clean water is collective punishment of the Palestinian people. A humanitarian disaster is now unfolding before the watching world in Gaza.

"The only way to stop this humanitarian disaster, the only way to stop the killing of thousands more children, is to use all our influence to press for an immediate ceasefire.

"Until now, the consensus between the Tory government and Labour Party at Westminster has resisted these calls. However, I firmly believe that the call for an immediate ceasefire reflects the overwhelming view of the public throughout these islands. That public view is also the overwhelming view of the international community, of the United Nations and its aid agencies.

"It is now time that this growing wave of democratic and international opinion informs and influences the democratic view of the Westminster parliament and its parties. It is now time that every single MP is finally given the chance to vote with their conscience on this issue. The ceasefire vote next Wednesday gives every MP that opportunity.

"Ahead of that vote, I believe it is vitally important that the full scale of support across these islands, in pressing for a humanitarian ceasefire in the Middle East, is made known to Westminster. I therefore hope you will be able to use your democratic position to show moral leadership and, publicly and privately, make clear to MPs your support for this immediate ceasefire.

"By doing so, it is my hope that Westminster’s position on a ceasefire can be finally changed, and that new momentum can then be generated amongst the entire international community to immediately stop the killing in Gaza and Israel.

"Yours sincerely,

Stephen Flynn MP

SNP Westminster Leader"