Action for Humanity and Caabu Joint Press Release: Major Iftar in Manchester for Gaza

Action for Humanity








Action for Humanity and Caabu Joint Press Release: Major Iftar in Manchester for Gaza 


27 March 2024

Action for Humanity and the Council for Arab-British Understanding (Caabu) hosted a major Iftar in Manchester on 27 March to show solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza.  This featured keynote speeches from Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, and Palestinian Ambassador to the UK, H.E. Dr Husam Zomlot. Other speakers included Othman Moqbel, Chief Executive Officer of Action for Humanity, Chris Doyle, Director of Caabu, and Professor David Nott OBE, Consultant General and Vascular Surgeon (who has recently returned from Gaza). Jordanian-Palestinian virtual artist Beesan Arafat, who produces paintings to communicate stories related to the Palestinian resistance to the Israeli occupation, spoke on the importance of celebrating the Palestinian art and culture. 

Diverse groups of people came together with the Palestinian diaspora from Greater Manchester and surrounding areas. Guests included several academics, councillors, Parliamentary candidates and seven MPs - which included former Caabu delegates in attendance Debbie Abrahams MP, Naz Shah MP, and Yasmin Qureshi MP, as well as Andrew Gwynne MP, Barbara Keeley MP, Afzal Khan MP, and Jim McMahon MP. 

The Iftar event took place in the increasingly alarming context of Israel’s continued onslaught on Gaza. On 18 March, the IPC had published a report in which it stated that famine is imminent, with 1.1 million people, half of Gaza’s population, experiencing catastrophic food insecurity. This humanitarian crisis demonstrates the necessity of an immediate humanitarian ceasefire and unfettered humanitarian access. 

Both Action for Humanity and Caabu have highly active programmes to help Palestinians, including in Gaza. Manchester-based charity Action for Humanity has been carrying out vital work in the Gaza Strip, supporting a quarter of a million people in desperate need of food, water, shelter, and medical treatment. Caabu has organised dozens of briefings with Parliamentarians and meetings with senior government and opposition leadership on the situation in Gaza. This is building on its delegations’ programme that has taken over 200 MPs and peers to Palestine and the Middle East since 1997. 

Both organisations continue to call for an immediate ceasefire, an end to the siege and unrestricted humanitarian access to deliver life-saving aid to Gaza and full accountability for all parties to the conflict. 

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham reiterated his stance on the absolute necessity of an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, which he has made clear since October, and affirmed that he will continue to serve all communities of Manchester as Mayor. He addressed the Palestinian community directly and said "I speak for everyone in the room in saying we are deeply proud of you, and what you do, and who you are."

Mayor Andy Burnham


Ambassador Zomlot commented: 

“Palestinians have taken heart at a time of unimaginable horror, of famine and genocide in the solidarity and support of the British people, nowhere more so than in Manchester We want to thank the Mayor Andy Burnham for showing political and moral leadership in calling early for a ceasefire. We also thank those civil society organisations such as Caabu and Action for Humanity who have been pillars of the tremendous response to these atrocities.” 

Dr Husam Zomlot


Professor David Nott OBE recalled harrowing details in his account of his recent time in Gaza. He described the situation in Gaza as being "hell", and illustrated the widespread nature of severe injuries and diseases left untreated across Gaza.

Dr David Nott


Othman Moqbel, the Chief Executive Officer at Action for Humanity said: 

“2.2 million Palestinians in Gaza are being starved and bombed, and millions of Palestinians worldwide are being let down everyday by our international leaders. We need the opening of all land crossings immediately to get aid in and avert the man-made famine. We must continue our collective efforts, do everything in our power to bring an end to what is being described as plausible genocide.” 

CEO Othman Moqbel


Chris Doyle, the Director of Caabu, said: 

"More than ever Palestinians in Gaza and elsewhere need our support as they face imminent famine and genocide. Manchester is sending tonight a strong message of solidarity but this must be translated into a British government policy that insists on an immediate ceasefire, full humanitarian access and proper accountability for all parties. That we have not done so already is a shocking indictment of the British political leadership." 

Caabu Chris Doyle





Notes to editors:  

For more information or interviews contact: 

  1. Chris Doyle: [email protected] on +44 (0)7968 040281 
  2. Action for Humanity: [email protected] on +44 (0)161 860 0163