Israel: Minister Sisulu's views consistent with position of party – ANC

Party says the minister's integrity is beyond reproach and it regrets the destructive utterances made by Zev Krengel

ANC committed to the implementation of conference resolution on the Palestinian question

18 May 2019

The ANC notes with deep regret and disappointment the destructive utterances attributed to Zev Krengel in the Jewish Report directed at South Africa's Minister of International Relations Honorable Lindiwe Sisulu for advancing progressive ANC stance in line with the 54th National Conference Resolution on the Palestinian question.

The views expressed by Minister Sisulu on the Palestinian Question are consistent with the position of her organization, the African National Congress. Minister Sisulu's integrity is beyond reproach. She enjoys the respect of millions of South Africans as well as leaders from many nations.

The ANC is satisfied that Minister Sisulu has recalibrated South Africa's foreign policy so that it reflects the people of South Africa's profound opposition to gross human rights abuses and colonial occupation of Palestine.

As part of our solidarity with the people of Palestine, the ANC's 54th National Conference resolved, in order to give practical expression of support to the oppressed people of Palestine, "to direct the South African government to immediately and unconditionally downgrade the South African Embassy in Israel to a Liaison Office".

The ANC humbly calls on the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) to appreciate and respect growing concerns for the ongoing human rights atrocities being visited upon the people of Palestine by the government of Israel. It remains our considered view that Israel must be part of a solution towards peace and human dignity for the Palestinian people and that such is not a religious or tribal matter, nor is it directed at any group or religion. In fact the stance taken by South Africa to downgrade its relations with Israel has been welcomed by people of all religions who are concerned about the impunity with which Israel has been allowed to act against civilians in the occupied Palestinian Territories.

Downgrading the Embassy is a practicalact Of solidarity with the oppressed people Of Palestine in the face of the injustices meted out by a powerful war machine against mostly civilians. We hope for no further death in Israel and in Palestine.

Peace and reconciliation will be achieved when recognition is given to the rights of the people of Palestine to their land and freedom, in line with a two-state solution and when Israel complies with international law.

In conclusion the ANC urges the SAJBD to refrain from actions that could be perceived as attempts to drive a wedge amongst the leaders of the ANC.

Issued by Pule Mabe, National Spokesperson, ANC, 18 May 2019