Priti Patel facing the sack after details of further secret meetings with Israeli officials emerge

Posted On: 
8th November 2017

Priti Patel is facing the sack after it emerged she had two further secret meetings with senior Israeli officials without telling Theresa May.

Cabinet minister Priti Patel is in trouble with Downing Street
PA Images

The International Development Secretary has already apologised after it emerged she held undisclosed meetings with 12 top Israelis - including prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu - while on a family holiday in the country in August.

She found herself in fresh trouble yesterday after it was revealed she asked her officials to examine the possibility of handing aid cash to the Israeli army after she returned to London.

Priti Patel kept Theresa May in dark over Israeli army cash plan

Priti Patel suggested sending aid cash to Israeli army after Benjamin Netanyahu meeting

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It also emerged last night that Ms Patel had failed to inform Mrs May of those proposals when she was hauled in to Number 10 for a dressing down on Monday.

In fresh revelations last night, Ms Patel was forced to admit holding two further undisclosed meetings since her holiday.

On 7 September, she met Israeli minister for public security, Gilad Erdan, for talks in the House of Commons. And on 18 September, she met Israeli foreign minister Yuval Rotem while in New York at the United Nations General Assembly. She had met both on her trip to Tel Aviv in August.

Ministers are expected to tell Downing Street in advance if they will be undertaking any official Government business.

According to the Sun, Mrs May will decide today whether to sack the Cabinet minister - a move which would seriously destabilise the ailing government.

A No 10 source told the paper night: “There was an expectation of full disclosure at the meeting. It is now clear Priti did not do that. Events will now have to be looked at again.”

Shadow Cabinet Office Minister Jon Trickett has demanded a formal investigation into whether Ms Patel broke the ministerial code. He insisted there have been four “clear breaches”.

Ms Patel is currently travelling to Africa, but No 10 has previously said they considered the matter closed.

Mrs May has asked for the ministerial code to be tightened in light of the controversy.