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SA stance on Middle East conflict has always been peaceful solution: Analyst

todayOctober 16, 2023 31

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Political analyst, Levy Ndou, has rejected assertions that the South African government officials could be divided on their stance on the Middle East conflict.

More than one million people have been displaced in the Gaza strip following last week’s unprecedented attack on Israel.

The death toll from Palestine and Israel has surpassed the 3 000 mark.

Several organisations and political heads have spoken out against the bloodshed in the more than five decades-long conflict.

Parliament Speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, has cautioned nations from taking sides in the Hamas conflict.

She says taking sides further exacerbates the tragic situation.

“We call upon the international community to assist in finding a lasting solution to the conflict, instead of taking sides, which lead to further escalation.

“There’s no winner in a war situation as we all suffer losses and casualties. The Republic of South Africa confirms its full support for the two state solution which will ensure that the state of Israel and Palestine live side by side peacefully.”

The National Assembly Speaker says the ongoing conflict should be understood in its historical context and addressed with a focus on saving human lives.

This while the International Relations Minister and ANC President, Cyril Ramaphosa, pledged solidarity with the Palestinians.

Minister Naledi Pandor and the President say Palestine supported South Africa in the struggle for freedom.

“South Africa is a long standing partner in solidarity with the people of Palestine and given that they supported our own struggle. We believe they have a right to enjoy justice and freedom and we call on the world to be as concerned about the deaths of Palestinians as they are concerned about the deaths of any other nation in the world, ” says Pandor.

The Minister also called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to issue an arrest warrant for, what she termed, the leaders of Apartheid Israel.

Ndou, however, says all the officials are singing from the same hymn sheet and there is no contradiction in their assertions.

“South Africa’s approach has always been that of ensuring that there is a peaceful solution to the conflict. South Africa has always been supportive of the Palestinian people because of the oppressive nature of the situation that South Africans went through during the apartheid era,” says Ndou.

“The government of South Africa, the ANC and many other political parties in South Africa are in support and solidarity with Palestine.”

Ndou says while some may be in support of the Israelis, there appears to be a clear position by the people of South Africa.

Meanwhile another think tank, Dr Sam Koma, says there are no fundamental contradictions in the stance taken by the President, Pandor and Mapisa-Nqakula.

“These leaders hold different capacities in expressing themselves on this international conflict situation.”

 

Written by: Lindiwe Mpanza

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