HUMZA Yousaf has called on the UK Government to end arms sales to Israel amid the ongoing killing of civilians in Gaza.

During an interview Middle East Eye – an independent, Middle Eastern news outlet – the First Minister said there was no “justification” for continuing to send weapons to the country. “I think that the UK Government needs to stop arming Israel,” he said.

“They now need to stop arming Israel. I cannot be clearer about that given some of the atrocious scenes that we have seen that are undoubtedly breaches of humanitarian law.

“Whether it’s innocent civilians waving white flags being shot dead. Whether it’s the bombing of refugee camps. Whether it’s the bombing of schools.

“Whether it’s the fact that, of course, we know tens of thousands of innocent women and children have been killed.

“What possible justification can there be to provide arms to an army and to a government that has been responsible for such flagrant breaches of humanitarian law.”

When asked what he would be doing to carry on this message, Yousaf said he would be writing to the UK Government.

“I’ll be writing to the UK Government on this very issue myself. I’ll do what I can to try and exert pressure on my party. We’ll consider what more we can do to try and exert pressure on the UK Government.

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"It's a source of great frustration to me the limit sometimes of what we can do is just exerting pressure. 

"But I'll do everything, including of course raising my voice on what I think is an important issue. 

"I cannot see the justification for arming the Israeli government given some of the devastation that we've seen". 

Yousaf added that the threat of a ground invasion in Rafah had contributed to his decision to call for the end of arms sales by the UK. 

"The fact now that we have the threat, the real threat, from the Israeli government of doing a ground invasion in Rafah, which we know has millions of innocent men, women and children. 

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"The threat of starting that on Ramadan, the holiest month in the Muslim calendar, to start an invasion which will lead to mass slaughter.

"Let's not pretend otherwise, let's not call it anything else. It will lead to mass slaughter. 

"What possible justification can there be for arming a government that's threatening to do that? 

"There can be none". 

After a clip of the interview was released by Middle East Eye, Yousaf posted on X/Twitter to confirm that he had written to the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. 

"The UK Government must stop sending arms to Israel," he said.

"From bombing refugee camps to the killing of thousands of innocent women and children, there can be no justification for continuing to send arms.

"I have written to the PM urging him to take action."