Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf shares ‘deep personal relief’ as in-laws escape Gaza

Humza Yousaf described the moment he called his 14-year-old daughter to tell her "granny and grandpa are coming home"

Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf has shared the “deep personal relief” felt by his family as he confirmed his in-laws have managed to leave Gaza.

Elizabeth and Maged El-Nakla, the parents of Mr Yousaf’s wife Nadia, were named among 92 British nationals permitted to pass through the Rafah border crossing into Egypt on Friday morning.

The El-Naklas, from Dundee, were in Gaza visiting relatives when the conflict erupted, and Mr Yousaf has regularly shared updates on his family’s situation – including that they had to drink sea water due to a lack of clean resources.

Elizabeth and Maged El-Nakla, from Dundee, travelled to Gaza prior to the conflict Credit: handout/PA

A statement from Mr Yousaf and his wife on Friday said: “We are very pleased to confirm that Nadia’s parents were able to leave Gaza through the Rafah crossing this morning.

“We are very grateful to all of those who have assisted our parents over the last few weeks, including the FCDO (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) crisis team.

“These last four weeks have been a living nightmare for our family, we are so thankful for all of the messages of comfort and prayers that we have received from across the world, and indeed from across the political spectrum in Scotland and the UK.”

The couple said they will continue to call for an immediate ceasefire and the opening of a humanitarian corridor to assist those who have not been able to leave the war-torn territory.

They added: “Although we feel a sense of deep personal relief, we are heartbroken at the continued suffering of the people of Gaza.

"We will continue to raise our voices to stop the killing and suffering of the innocent people of Gaza.

“We reiterate our calls for all sides to agree to an immediate ceasefire, the opening of a humanitarian corridor so that significant amounts of aid, including fuel, can flow through to a population that have suffered collective punishment for far too long, and for all hostages to be released.

“Families in Gaza and Israel are suffering the loss of entirely innocent men, women and children.

"We pray for them all, and pray that the international community at last focuses on achieving a lasting peace in the region: one that recognises that the rights and lives of Palestinians and Israelis are equal.”

More of Ms El-Nakla’s family – who are Palestinian nationals – remain in Gaza, including her brother who has been working as a doctor amid the conflict.

Around two weeks ago, Mrs El-Nakla, a retired nurse, released an emotional video from inside Deir Al-Balah, Gaza, as the situation escalated.

She said: “Where is humanity?… “Where are people’s hearts in the world to let this happen in this day and age?”

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