WATCH: Layla Moran’s speech to Conference

I wasn’t in the hall for this but you can tell the quality of a speech from people’s faces as they came out. They were full of admiration for Layla, whose wisdom and compassion has impressed people across not just the UK but the world.

Layla’s Mum Randa was in the audience to watch her.

She described her family’s pre 1948 life in Palestine and the catastrophe that followed.

She said that the war was serving the wicked fusion  of Netanyahu’s government, calling their rhetoric genocidal.

Just as Hamas can’t remain in power, she said, Netanyahu and all who back his government must go too. They are all dangers and blockers to peace.

She reaffirmed the Liberal Democrats commitent to an International Criminal Couet investigation.  This is a fight between the extremists and the peacemakers and it’s spilling on to our streets, she said. She said that those flames were being fanned by the Conservative Party as much as anyone else.

Liberal Democrats do not pick a side she said, we stand for compassion, humanity and peace.

She talked about her deep despair for the Gazans who are trapped, her relatives who have spent the  past 5 months seeking refuge in a church. When she went to the area a few months ago, she described how an Israeli peace activist comforted her. She said she was astounded by how many people met chose not the path of anger, but to strive for peace.

She talked about the importance of  UNWRA in distributing aid in Gaza and called on the Government to restore funding to the agency.

She set out the Liberal Democrat approach and announced we are now calling on sanctions to apply to anyone who supports  and enables the “insidious settler movement.”

“No longer should acting with impunity go without consequence. When we say we believe in international law, we mean it.”

She says she is proud of our party and how our MPs have voted for a bilateral ceasefire at every opportunity. She condemned those who played petty party politics with Palestinian and Israeli lives with harsh words for SNP, Labour (who put electoral gain before its moral compass) and the Conservatives. The country, and the world, needs the Liberal Democrats more than ever.

It’s an incredible speech.  I defy you to watch it without getting something in your eye.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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  • Robert SAYER 20th Mar '24 - 9:19am

    Why the hell isnt she leading our party

  • @Robert Sayer. Because when the party had a choice between Layla and Ed in the last leadership election they chose Ed. Layla is young enough to run again next time we have a leadership election.

  • Nonconformistradical 20th Mar '24 - 11:04am

    @Robert Sayer
    To confirm and amplify what Mick said – Ed won the leadership ballot decisively – around 63.5% to 36.5% with a 57.6% turnout.

    For what it’s worth my guess is there was a preference for the more experienced MP

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