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UK in export licences warning

Licences for the export of equipment which could be used by Israeli forces in Gaza may be suspended if there is a fresh outbreak of violence, the Government has said.

A review of existing licences found 12 were for components which could be part of equipment used in Gaza by the Israel Defence Forces and Business Secretary Vince Cable said they would be suspended if the ceasefire broke down.

The review found that the vast majority of exports currently licensed for Israel are not for items that could be used by forces in Gaza, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Bis) said.

Mr Cable said: "We welcome the current ceasefire in Gaza and hope that it will lead to a peaceful resolution. However the UK Government has not been able to clarify if the export licence criteria are being met.

"In light of that uncertainty we have taken the decision to suspend these existing export licences in the event of a resumption of significant hostilities."

The licences include components for military radar systems, combat aircraft and tanks, Bis said.

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