Paul Bristow, who held the position of parliamentary private secretary with the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, has been relieved of his duties. This role is considered one of the more junior positions within the government.
The reason for his removal stems from his communication with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, where he urged for a “permanent” end to the conflict between Israel and Hamas. A spokesperson cited that Mr. Bristow’s comments were “not in line with the principles of collective responsibility.”
As a parliamentary private secretary at the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, Mr. Bristow penned a two-page letter to Mr. Sunak last Thursday. In his letter, he raised concerns about the human toll and displacement caused by the conflict and questioned its contribution to Israel’s security. He also advocated for a permanent ceasefire and the delivery of humanitarian aid to those in need, emphasising the importance of access to essential resources for the Palestinian people.
Mr. Bristow, who is the Member of Parliament for Peterborough, expressed his understanding of the Prime Minister’s decision and regret at leaving a job he enjoyed. He stated his intention to address the issue that matters deeply to many of his constituents more openly from the backbenches rather than as part of the government payroll.