Israel: AU's decision demonstrates bridge-building – SAJBD

Chairperson Shaun Zagnoev expresses disappointment at negative reaction by SA govt

The AU's decision to provide observer status to Israel is far-sighted & demonstrates bridge-building

4 August 2021

The SA Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) has applauded the African Union Commisson’s (AUC) decision to provide observer status to the State of Israel.   In a letter to AUC chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat, the SAJBD, the representative body of the largest Jewish community on the African continent, commended the organisation’s “bold and far-sighted decision”.   This move demonstrates the AUC’s commitment to dialogue and bridge-building and has enhanced the potential for engagement between Israel and Africa in many important spheres.

Whilst welcoming the AUC’s decision, SAJBD’s National Chairperson, Shaun Zagnoev said he was, “disappointed by the negative reaction by the South African government which we would have hoped would have embraced this as an opportunity for constructive engagement and dialogue”.  He expressed the hope that government would come to reconsider its position in light of the AUC’s move and make itself part of the positive new changes that lay ahead.    

The SAJBD is committed to a Two State Solution with a viable Palestinian State living in peace alongside the Jewish state of Israel, in line with both the AUC and the SA government.  We reiterate our commitment to working with the AUC in furthering the interests and well-being of Africa and its people.

Issued by Wendy Kahn, National Director, SAJBD, 4 August 2021