Priti Patel’s position as a minister looks increasingly precarious over her secret meetings in Israel.
It emerged she didn’t tell Theresa May about plans to send aid to the Israeli army. The aid which would help Syrian refugees in occupied parts of the Golan Heights. She held several meetings with Israeli politicians, including the prime minister, while on a family holiday.
Rumours have been swirling that she could lose her cabinet position as international development secretary.
Patel has not responded yet as she had been on a trip to Uganda and Ethiopia with Liam Fox. On 8 November, a furious Mrs May ordered her to come back to the UK immediately for questioning.
Downing Street initially insisted Mrs May had confidence in Ms Patel, after she was given a dressing down on Monday 6 November.
However, it has now emerged that Patel held two further meetings in September. She failed to disclose these meetings when rebuked by Ms May on Monday.
Fresh evidence also emerged to suggest Patel deliberately avoided facing questions in the Commons on Tuesday, by bringing forward her flight to Kenya.
Number 10 confirmed that Ms Patel had discussed the possibility of UK aid being used to support for Israel. The assistance would be the Israeli army in Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.
However, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman was unable to say whether she had explained when she met Mrs May. That the scheme would have involved supplying funding to the Israeli army.
‘I don’t have precise detail on that beyond saying that she disclosed that she’d had conversations about humanitarian support,’ the spokesman said.
‘As to whether or not we ever had the conversation specifically about that particular aspect of foreign aid, it may well be that we didn’t.’
Photo Credit: DFID