The many faces of apartheid: South Africa calls for Israel to be declared an ‘apartheid state’
Israel should be classified as an apartheid state, South Africa’s Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor said Tuesday (26 July), proposing that the UN General Assembly should establish a committee to verify whether it satisfied its requirements.
Pandor evoked comparisons between the Palestinian narrative and South Africa’s history of racial segregation at the Palestinian Heads of Mission in Africa. “The Palestinian narrative evokes experiences of South Africa’s own history of racial segregation and oppression,” she added. The comments and accusations were reportedly made at the second meeting of the Palestinian Heads of Mission in Africa, held in Pretoria, one of South Africa’s capital cities.
The South African government has remained a strong ally of Palestine, providing both material and public support for its liberation cause. Pretoria has expressed concerns that Israel’s continued occupation of “significant portions of the West Bank” and the development of new settlements there “are glaring examples of violations of international law” as the long-running Israel-Palestine conflict goes on. “If there is any country or countries that can comprehend the suffering and the struggle for freedom and independence of Palestine, it is the African continent and the people of Africa,” said Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki, who attended the forum.
Pandor was the first representative of the South African government to denounce the killing of Palestinian-American Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in May by Israeli forces during a raid in the West Bank. Over the years, the South African government has remained a strong ally of Palestine, providing both material and public support for its liberation cause.