Humza Yousaf says in-laws 'traumatised' by experience in Gaza as he repeats call for ceasefire

Scotland's First Minister Humza Yousaf has called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. Credit: PA

First minister Humza Yousaf has once again called for a ceasefire in Gaza after his parents-in-law managed to flee the territory and return to Scotland.

Elizabeth and Maged El-Nakla, from Dundee, had been trapped in Gaza for four weeks with limited communication to their family in the UK.

Left "traumatised" by their time in a warzone, Mr Yousaf said his father-in-law in particular was left shaken by his time trapped in Gaza.

Mr Yousaf said: "It is the first time I have ever seen my father-in-law breakdown in tears.

“He was really broken by the fact that he had to say goodbye to his mother, to his son, to their grandchildren, as well – the youngest of which is only three months old.

"I can see it in their faces and everything they're saying that they are genuinely traumatised.

"At one point my father-in-law was speaking to a neighbour who had come to the door and a firework went off - you could see his body jump and get the fright of his life.

"They said it was utterly horrendous what they had to deal with, the lack of food and water supplies."

Humza Yousaf with his wife and in-laws, who were trapped in Gaza. Credit: X/@HumzaYousaf/PA

While fleeing Gaza, Mr and Mrs El-Nakla were forced to leave behind family members including Mr Yousaf's brother-in-law who is working as a doctor treating the wounded in Gaza - and his wife's elderly grandmother.

Speaking of their return, the first minister said he and his wife had doubted if they would ever see them again.

"Mother would tell me that as soon as it became dark, she would begin to sweat and convulse because that was when they would hear the drones, the bombs, the airstrikes. They wouldn't know if they would survive the night and that is the daily reality for people in Gaza."

Mr Yousaf has continued to call for a ceasefire, insisting that a "humanitarian pause" would not be an acceptable response to thousands of men, women and children being killed.

He added: "If you are not calling for an immediate ceasefire, we are enabling the suffering of innocent men, women and children. I think it is time that the international community stood up and were on the right side of history. "

'I'm determined that Scotland will be on the right side of history. I will continue to call for a immediate ceasefire and I hope the international community will join that call'

Several heads of major UN bodies have also made the call for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.

"An entire population is besieged and under attack, denied access to the essentials for survival, bombed in their homes, shelters, hospitals and places of worship. This is unacceptable," a joint statement read. 

"We need an immediate humanitarian ceasefire."

In Gaza, at least 10,000 people have been killed since the start of the war, with at least 4,100 thought to be children, according to the Hamas-led Health Ministry.

It comes after Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) announced they had surrounded Gaza City, splitting the besieged coastal strip in two, as the territory recovers from a third communications outage.

IDF rear admiral Daniel Hagari claimed “today there is north Gaza and south Gaza”, as Israeli media reported troops were expected to enter Gaza City within 48 hours.

Mr Yousaf also added that plans for pro-Palestinian marches in London on Armistice Day should go ahead, saying he was “beyond angry” at the UK government’s response.

The plans have caused concerns and been condemned by the UK government, but Mr Yousaf has said describing them as “hate marches” is “unacceptable”.

The march, according to organisers, would see demonstrators begin at Hyde Park in the capital before walking to the US Embassy and not walk past the Cenotaph war memorial in Whitehall.

Prime minister Rishi Sunak said the Met Police had his “absolute and total backing” to tackle criminality.

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