ICJ decision on Gaza


The International Court of Justice has reminded Israel that it has already ordered it to “ensure the safety and security of the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip” – including in Rafah. The onslaught on Rafah that Netanyahu is threatening would be a clear breach of that order and illegal. How will history judge the international community if we just carry on making polite requests to Israel...

The West’s action against the Houthis is doomed to fail


With more than 68 ships per day passing through the Suez Canal, carrying 12 percent of all goods traded in the world, it has been impossible for the international community to ignore the escalating attacks on merchant shipping in the Red Sea that Yemen's Houthis have launched over the past two months. In that context, the decision of the US and the UK to take military action against Houthi bases...

Gaza: lives in backpacks


A friend in Gaza has just sent me this photo of people trying to get to the south on foot, having lost their homes in and around Gaza City. Whole lives consigned to a carrier bag or backpack. It will always shame the world that we let these war crimes carry on.

Gaza: Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery


On Remembrance Sunday, a video of my visit to the Commonwealth War Graves in Gaza Cemetery in 2012. I met Ibrahim Jaradah MBE who had lovingly kept the cemetery immaculate for decades. Ibrahim’s family have continued his work ever since but they are amongst the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who have now been forced to flee the north of Gaza. I don’t know how far the cemetery has survived...

Labour must not row back on recognising Palestine


By Katie Neame Originally published by Labour List, November 9, 2023 A former Labour shadow minister has urged the party not to further row back on past commitments on recognising Palestine when in government, criticising its decision not to promise immediate recognition of statehood. Speaking exclusively to LabourList, Richard Burden, the former Labour MP for Birmingham Northfield, called on...

Government’s new Bill ignores UN rules


This week, the UK Government has published a Bill that will both jettison Britain’s respect for international laws that ban the acquisition of territory by conquest and ignore UN rules signed by the UK over a decade ago calling on businesses to ensure their commercial dealings abroad uphold human rights. The Bill will also uniquely shield human rights abuses by Israel from scrutiny by UK public...

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Richard Burden

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I was Labour Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield between 1992 and 2019 and a former Shadow Transport Minister. I now chair Healthwatch in Birmingham and Solihull, and the West Midlands Board of Remembering Srebrenica. I also work as a public affairs consultant. I am an effective community advocate and stakeholder alliance builder with a passion for human rights. I am a trustee of the Balfour Project charity and of Citizens Advice Birmingham, and a former Chair of Medical Aid for Palestinians.

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