100,000 signatures for Derry man's Netanyahu arrest petition

100,000 signatures for Derry man's Netanyahu arrest petition

A DERRY man’s petition to have Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrested for war crimes has received over 100,000 signatures, meaning the issue can be considered for debate in Parliament.

The Israeli PM has been in London this week visiting David Cameron.

The petition was started by Damian Moran from Derry, a software developer living in Manchester, on the government's official petitions website.

It called for Netanyahu to be arrested during his state visit to Britain.

Talking to Arabic news station Al Jazeera, Moran said: "I honestly don't expect him to get arrested because of the universal jurisdiction laws [but] it is a clear message to him that there's a massive amount of people who don't want him here."

Started on August 7, the petition soon surpassed the 10,000 signatures required to warrant an official response from the British Government.

That response read: “Under UK and international law, visiting heads of foreign governments, such as Prime Minister Netanyahu, have immunity from legal process and cannot be arrested or detained.

"The British Government has invited Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as head of the Israeli Government, to visit the UK in September. Under UK and international law, certain holders of high-ranking office in a State, including Heads of State, Heads of Government and Ministers for Foreign Affairs are entitled to immunity, which includes inviolability and complete immunity from criminal jurisdiction.”

The response however did go on to acknowledge what it called the terrible toll of last year’s Gaza conflict.

“As the Prime Minister said, we were all deeply saddened by the violence and the UK has been at the forefront of international reconstruction efforts.”

Now however the petition has crossed the 100,000 mark, meaning it will be considered for debate in Parliament.

Tweeting his thanks to supporters, Moran said: “Well done everyone who signed and shared the petition the Apartheid state of Israel now has a clear message from the people of the U.K.”