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Fifty-six Labour Party MPs voted against party Leader Sir Keir Starmer’s policy and passed a resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. Ten of the party’s frontbenchers (ministers and cabinet members) have left their jobs over the vote, including eight shadow ministers. Starmer had earlier insisted that anyone voting against his policy of full support for Israel’s slaughter of Palestinians would have to resign leadership positions. Recall that Starmer was a leading advocate of the expulsion of former Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn from the party over his support for Palestinian rights (which they dubbed “anti-Semitism”).

Jess Phillips, the shadow domestic violence minister, said she was voting with “my constituents, my head, and my heart.... I can see no route where the current military action does anything but put at risk the hope of peace and security for anyone in the region now and in the future.”

The vote was on a Scottish National Party amendment to a government motion on its plans for the year ahead, presented in the King’s Speech last week. The SNP called for an end to the “collective punishment of the Palestinian people” and urged “all parties to agree to an immediate ceasefire.” It was defeated, 125-294, with the 56 Labour rebels joining other opposition parties, against the Conservatives who opposed it.

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