British Politician Layla Moran’s Family Stuck in Gaza
LONDON: Layla Moran, a British politician, expressed serious concern through a series of tweets regarding Israeli attacks on a church in Gaza City. Her extended family, along with hundreds of others, has been trapped in the church for several days, where two Christian women were tragically shot dead by an Israeli sniper on Saturday.
In a separate development, Pope Francis deplored the killing of the two women on Sunday and once again implied that Israel was employing “terrorism” tactics in Gaza.
Approximately 300 people, including children and the sick, are reportedly seeking refuge in the Holy Family Catholic Parish. The two victims, Nahida and Samar, were fatally shot by an Israeli sniper within the church grounds, with reports of seven others sustaining injuries.
Expressing her deep concern, Layla Moran tweeted, “I am desperately worried for my extended family in Gaza City. They have no electricity, no water, no food, and now a sniper is inside the Church compound where they are sheltering. My family are not collateral damage. We need an immediate bilateral ceasefire now.”
I am desperately worried for my extended family in Gaza City.
They have no electricity, no water, no food, and now a sniper is inside the Church compound where they are sheltering.
My family are not collateral damage. We need an immediate bilateral ceasefire now. pic.twitter.com/zQVpLSdtgN
— Layla Moran 🔶 (@LaylaMoran) December 17, 2023
In a BBC interview, Ms. Moran explained that the situation near the church escalated last Tuesday, revealing the use of bombs and white phosphorus targeting the compound.
The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem stated that a gunman killed the two women around midday on Saturday, with one attempting to carry the other to safety.
Layla Moran, the Member of Parliament for Oxford West and Abingdon, disclosed that her relatives are among those seeking shelter in the church complex.
The patriarchate emphasized that no warning was given before the shooting, stating, “they were shot in cold blood inside the premises of the parish, where there are no belligerents.”
Ms. Moran’s tweets gained widespread attention, with her plea for an immediate bilateral ceasefire resonating online. Pope Francis, in a statement, condemned the attack on the Catholic parish compound, expressing sorrow for the loss of innocent lives.
While many expressed solidarity with Layla Moran, some pointed out a notable lack of public support from her parliamentary colleagues. Al Jazeera reported that the church has been a direct target of Israeli bombardment in recent days, resulting in significant damage, and snipers targeting individuals within the churchyard.