STEPHEN Flynn has said he is “deeply confused” as to why Anas Sarwar claimed Labour whips had been in contact with the SNP about their Gaza motion.

The SNP Westminster leader's party has forced a vote in the House of Commons, set for Wednesday, pushing for an immediate ceasefire in the region.

Speaking to the BBC on Sunday, the Scottish Labour leader said there had been contact between the two parties’ whips on a potential deal to support the motion.

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Owen Thompson, the SNP’s chief whip, quickly rubbished the claims and Flynn told journalists there had not been contact as of Monday morning.

“I’m deeply confused that Anas Sarwar took it upon himself to go on national television and to effectively lie and mislead the people of Scotland regarding Labour whips speaking to SNP whips,” he said after an event with First Minister Humza Yousaf in Aberdeen.

“That has not happened – that is categorically untrue.

“I think that does Anas Sarwar a deep dis-service – maybe he’s been spun a line by UK Labour and he’s fallen for it, but it hasn’t happened.”

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It comes as shadow health secretary Wes Streeting said his party are "considering" their options on whether or not to back to the SNP's motion.

On Sunday, Flynn offered a meeting to UK Labour leader Keir Starmer to discuss the vote, due to take place on Wednesday – but he stressed the aim of an immediate ceasefire must not be watered down.

“If there’s an opportunity for him to back our motion in relation to an immediate ceasefire, I’d like to have that discussion,” Flynn said.

The SNP Westminster leader also said that he had offered to meet with Starmer on Monday to discuss the vote.

Speaking at the Scottish Labour conference in Glasgow on Sunday, Starmer said “fighting must stop now” in Gaza and called for a "ceasefire that lasts". 

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Meanwhile, those at the gathering of activists voted unanimously to back a ceasefire on Saturday, and urged Scottish Labour MPs Ian Murray and Michael Shanks to vote for one if the opportunity arises.

In his speech, Murray stopped short of calling for an "immediate" ceasefire.

Sarwar defended this, stating that Murray had been "unequivocal" in his support of the conference's motion.

However, the Scottish Labour leader would not say if he would support the SNP motion or if he disagreed with its contents, despite being shown the short text by journalists. 

Shadow foreign secretary David Lammy told broadcasters on Sunday the party was still considering its approach to the motion.

Labour have so far not ruled out backing the Commons motion, with fears it could reopen deep divides among MPs.

A similar vote tabled by the SNP in November saw eight shadow ministers break ranks to back an immediate ceasefire, with some 56 Labour members defying a three-line whip and backing an amendment to the King’s Speech.

The National: Wes Streeting

On Monday, Streeting (above) told TalkTV that his party wants to see “what the final motion looks like”.

He added: “We are not going to be pushed around by protesters, and we are not going to be told what to say by our opponents in Parliament either.”

Asked if he would consider changes to the party’s motion, the SNP Westminster leader said: “I believe in an immediate ceasefire and I would encourage other party leaders to do likewise.”

Flynn went on to claim the “appeasement of the UK Government simply isn’t working”.

“You can’t have 30,000 people killed, 70,000 injured, 1.4 million people sitting in Rafah which is usually home to about 170,000 to 180,000 people being bombarded by the Israeli Defence Force (IDF), and the United Kingdom, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, a close ally of Israel, who of course have a vote in the United Nations, who sell arms to Israel, just sits back, sits silent, doesn’t do anything,” he said.

He added that history is “not going to be judging many people in Westminster particularly well”.

A spokeswoman for the chief whip said a decision had not been made on Conservative whipping arrangements ahead of a vote on the SNP motion.