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Anger as Tory MPs accuse Foreign Secretary of "bigotry towards Israel"

January 31, 2014 at 12:13 am

According to the Mail on Sunday newspaper, Conservative MPs in the Coalition Government have accused the Foreign Secretary of being under the influence of anti-Israel diplomats in the Foreign Office and being biased towards the Palestinians and Arabs.

The newspaper claims that Douglas Carswell MP told William Hague that he “is ‘under the thumb of pro-Arabist’ diplomats in the Foreign Office that displays a kind of bigotry towards Israel… Ministers are supposed to direct officials, not the other way round.”

The newspaper added that Carswell was among a number of Conservative Party MPs who claim that Hague “is too tough on Israel and too soft on the Palestinian National Authority” and that he “states things that are completely unacceptable to be said about a democratic fellow country [Israel]”.

It is reported that the usually ice-cool Hague “exploded with rage during an angry confrontation with Tory MPs” who criticised him, accusing them of talking “nonsense”.

“It is completely untrue to suggest that I have been taken captive by the Foreign Office officials,” said Hague. “I overrule their advice all the time.”

In a direct response to Carswell, the Mail on Sunday quoted Hague as saying his Tory colleague is “living in a fantasy world and talking total nonsense. The Foreign Office is not pro- Palestinian. I have never heard such claptrap”.

The right-wing newspaper pointed out that the British Foreign Secretary refused to apologise for his stance towards Israel when, during a meeting with MPs from the Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) group, he is reported to have said, “Israel has too many enemies and that is a frightening strategy.”

It is alleged that the angry confrontation took place behind closed doors in the House of Commons, between Hague and 30 MPs belonging to the CFI lobby.