COSAS pigs head campaign misguided and unfortunate - ANC

Jessie Duarte says calls for heightened action to boycott and isolate Israel are not a call or a campaign against Judaism nor is it anti-semitic


31 OCTOBER 2014

The African National Congress has noted with concern the campaign being championed by the Congress of South African Students (COSAS) which in the past week has entailed the placing of head of pigs in kosher and halaal sections of various Woolworths stores across the country.

These actions have been presented as a furtherance of the objectives of our solidarity campaign for the boycott, disinvestment and imposition of sanctions against Israel. The placing of pigs heads, in violation of the religious beliefs of certain sections of our population, is misguided and extremely unfortunate. The ANC calls upon COSAS to desist from further engaging in such acts.

Our calls for solidarity with the people of Palestine and for heightened action to boycott and isolate Israel is not a call or a campaign against Judaism nor is it anti-semitic. We are aggrieved by the notion of a powerful state that continues to exert violence against the people of Palestine, the victims in this conflict, and the continued occupation of Palestine by Israel.

As a part of the community of progressive peoples of the world, the ANC does not condone religious persecution in any manner and by whomsoever engages in it. We therefore reaffirm our position that the mass democratic movement must its heighten its solidarity campaign aimed at supporting the finding of a just solution, including the strengthening of a sovereign independent state of Palestine, in order help to bring peace to the region and end conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

This must be done within a culture and environment that does not promote anti-semitism nor undermine the constitutionality enshrined right to freedom of religion enjoyed by all people of this country.

Statement issued by Jessie Duarte, ANC Deputy Secretary General, October 31 2014

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