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Beckenham MP Bob Stewart caught in the middle of a West Bank riot

PUBLISHED: 15:10 09 July 2012

Bob Stewart inspecting a CS gas cannister after the riot

Bob Stewart inspecting a CS gas cannister after the riot

Archant

Beckenham MP Bob Stewart was caught in the middle of a riot between Palestinians and Israelis during a West Bank visit.

The former UN Commander, who is a member of the Defence Select Committee, was invited by the Council for British Arab to see the effect the conflict has on civilians.

Palestinians were using catapults to fire rocks at Israeli soldiers in a dispute over a decision by the Israeli authorities to close the main road into their village, Kafr Qaddam, forcing the Palestinians to take a route which is 11 km longer.

Mr Stewart witnessed the Israelis firing at the crowd with mortar rockets containing CS gas. Afterwards he was shown the cartridges which had contained the CS gas by the rioters.

He said: “There must be a two state solution to this troubled region, but at present there is no sign of compromise from either side. From my experience in conflict zones it is always the ordinary people who suffer because of the lack of leadership from the politicians.”

The four-day visit took place in mid June.

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