A Bolton MP has condemned the “collective punishment of the Palestinian people” and called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Yasmin Qureshi MP, who represents Bolton South East, made the impassioned demand after receiving an email from a constituent who’s family were trapped in the war torn region.

Quoting from the email to a packed House of Commons for Prime Minister’s Questions, Ms Qureshi described the conditions faced by the family in Gaza.

She said: “My heart cannot take this anymore, we are being massacred, relentlessly bombed, houses are being destroyed, no water, no food, no electricity.”

Gaza has been under intense bombardment from Israeli forces in recent weeks with civilian deaths soaring as the conflict intensifies.

Asian Image: Around 2,000 people turned out for a protest in support of Palestine in Bolton town centre earlier this monthAround 2,000 people turned out for a protest in support of Palestine in Bolton town centre earlier this month (Image: Henry Lisowski)

The conflict has reverberated around Bolton during that time with a mass rally organised by the group Bolton4Palestine on October 15 attracting around 2,000 to a march from Queens Park to Victoria Square.

Flags and banners were unfurled as attendees heard a series of speeches from campaigners in support of the rights of Palestinians.

Since then, senior Bolton Councillors have announced plans to collaborate with the borough’s interfaith council to organise a peace vigil at the same site at a later date.

Asian Image: Gaza has been bombarded in recent weeksGaza has been bombarded in recent weeks (Image: PA)

Last week Bolton Labour, the ruling group on the council, issued a its own statement condemning “the appalling violence which is taking place in Israel and Gaza” and calling on the government and MPs to demand a ceasefire.

Now Ms Qureshi, who has represented the seat since 2010 has used her platform in Parliament to highlight the plight of civilians in Gaza, especially children, and to call on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to back an immediate ceasefire.

Addressing Parliament, Ms Qureshi said: “Save the Children reported that one child is killed every 15 minutes.

“As I speak, 130 babies in incubators are in danger if fuel does not reach their hospital in time.

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“This is collective punishment of the Palestinian people in Gaza for crimes they did not commit.

“How many more innocent Palestinians must die before this Prime Minister calls for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire?”

In response Mr Sunak said that both sides of the House of Commons agreed that Israel “has the right to defend itself” from Hamas but claimed the government was working to help innocent people in Gaza.

He said: “We are working as hard as we can to get as much humanitarian aid into Gaza as quickly as practically possible.”