In a decisive and courageous action, the South African government has chosen to recall its ambassador and diplomatic mission from Israel. This decision serves as a strong statement of condemnation towards the egregious events occurring in Gaza, where hospitals and refugee camps are relentless bombed. The flagrant disregard for human rights has reached intolerable levels, compelling South Africa to take a stand.

The Telegram Correspondent

In a firm display of dissent, the South African government has recalled its ambassador and diplomatic mission from Israel. This action is a protest against the atrocities committed in Gaza, which include the deliberate bombardment of hospitals and refugee camps, as well as  violations of human rights.

The country has remained steadfast in its support for the Palestinians in their struggle against Israel, who are the occupying force responsible for the ongoing bombings in the Gaza Strip. These bombings have tragically claimed the lives of over 9,000 people, including a significant number of innocent children.

South Africa has strongly condemned the atrocities committed by Israel in Gaza, denouncing them as severe human rights violations, including the alarming bombing of refugee centres. The South African government has labelled these acts as genocide.

It has been one month since the commencement of hostilities between Hamas and Israel, triggered by Hamas’s assault on Israel resulting in over 1,400 fatalities and several abductions. Lamentably, the Palestinian casualties during this timeframe have exceeded 10,000, with a significant proportion comprising children, including infants.

Minister in the presidency, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, said the South African government has decided to recall all its diplomats currently stationed in Tel Aviv. This measure is to facilitate consultations about the ongoing situation in the region. Furthermore, Ntshavheni said the Cabinet has taken note of the disparaging comments made by the Israeli ambassador to South Africa, targeting those who express dissent towards the Israeli government’s acts of “atrocities and genocide”.

“The Department of International Relations was instructed to take the necessary measures within the diplomatic channels and protocols to deal with (his) conduct,” she said, labelling his position in South Africa.

International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor said she will consult with the South African diplomatic officials in Israel to get a full appraisal of what was going on there.

“We need to have this engagement with our officials because we are extremely concerned at the continued killing of children and innocent civilians in the Palestinian territory and we believe the nature of response by Israel has become one of collective punishment,” said Pandor.

The ANC-led government has been calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and has been vocal about its stance and support for Palestinians in their struggle against Israel’s occupation.

The party and the government have drawn parallels between the Palestinians’ struggle for freedom against the occupation of their land which the world has coined Israel’s Apartheid, and our struggle for liberation against the Nationalist Party and white domination and oppression.

The EFF has also marched and called out to Israel to cease the killing of Palestinians in Gaza and threatened to call a consumer boycott of Israeli products sold in South Africa.

However, other parties such as the Patriotic Alliance and Cope have come out in support of Israel as a state and condemned Hamas’s attack on 7 October saying Israel has a right to defend itself against attacks.

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