AN SNP MSP has tabled a Holyrood motion expressing "grave concern" about the impact of the war in Gaza on pregnant women, babies and children.

Rona Mackay, the convener of the cross-party group on men’s violence against women and children, also called for an immediate ceasefire and peaceful solution to prevent further loss of life.

The Strathkelvin and Bearsden MSP’s motion has been signed by a number of SNP and Scottish Labour politicians.

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It comes as international mediators are working to extend the truce in Gaza after weeks of heavy aerial bombardment by Israel that has killed thousands of Palestinians.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that women, children and newborns were “disproportionately” bearing the burden during the conflict.

On November 3, WHO reported that 2326 women and 3760 children were killed in the Gaza Strip, 67% of all casualties.

The cross party group estimates that around 4000 women and babies are currently unable to access basic pre and post-natal healthcare and support.

The National:

They have written to the UK Government and British Medical Associate (BMA) calling on them to facilitate more medical supplies and medics to “alleviate as much human suffering as possible”.

The United Nations (UN) estimates there are around 50,000 pregnant women in Gaza, with 180 giving birth every day.

The motion states that the cross-party group is “distressed at what it considers will be the inevitable loss of life on a tragic scale”, expressing “extreme concerns” about the physical and mental impacts of the war and adding that safe pregnancy, childbirth, infancy and childhood should be “basic human rights”.

It also calls on Westminster “to do everything in its power to protect these precious lives and promote a swift and peaceful outcome to this conflict”.

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We told how while Holyrood voted to back a ceasefire, an SNP amendment to the King’s Speech calling for the UK Government to do the same did not pass, but led to a number of Labour MPs rebelling against the party leadership, including some on the front bench.

Mackay’s motion has been supported by 20 MSPs including SNP parliamentarians Karen Adam, Kaukab Stewart and Colin Beattie, as well as Scottish Labour MSPs Paul Sweeney and Mercedes Villalba.

“The ongoing conflict in Gaza is deeply distressing and I deplore the tragic loss of both Palestinian and Israeli lives,” Mackay (below) said.

The National:

“I am especially concerned that, like in many other conflicts, women and children are disproportionately impacted, with thousands of pregnant women and babies unable to access pre and postnatal healthcare.

“Such enormous suffering cannot be allowed to continue – innocent civilians must be able to exercise their basic human rights and recover from the devastation that has followed the October 7 terror attacks.

“We cannot allow innocent women and children to be collateral damage in this terrible conflict – there must be an immediate ceasefire."

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It comes after Hamas released 12 hostages and Israel released 30 Palestinian prisoners on the fifth day of the temporary truce.

Mediators are currently working to extend the ceasefire, which is due to expire in a day otherwise, with Israel welcoming the release of dozens of hostages in recent days, adding it will maintain the truce if Hamas keeps freeing captives.

Hamas is still believed to be holding around 150 hostages – enough to extend the ceasefire for another two weeks under the current arrangement of releasing 10 each day.