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SA calls for extreme measures to cripple Israel

SA policy on Palestine not new, says ACDP MP Cheryllyn Dudley (pictured) told SAJR-Online, “but the Cape Town Declaration calls for extreme measures to cripple Israel financially,” she warns. Dudley continues to put up a strenuous fight for Israel on International Relations Parliamentary Portfolio Committee & will still have an opportunity to try & influence the outcome.
by ANT KATZ | Feb 12, 2014

Cape Town Declaration is “nothing new”

Government policy regarding Palestinian solidarity is nothing new but the Cape Town Declaration calls for extreme measures to cripple Israel financially says ACDP MP Cheryllyn Dudley

SA's International Relations Parliamentary Portfolio Committee held a "Solidarity Conference in Support of the Peoples of Palestine, Western Sahara and Cuba" last Thursday. ACDP MP and virulent pro-Israel Committee-member Cheryllyn Dudley (pictured), says, while the conference’s 15 “Resolutions and Recommendations on Palestine” are not new in terms of government’s existing policy regarding solidarity with Palestine – they do make calls for measures to cripple Israel financially to the extreme.

The parliamentary conference was attended by MPs as well as a wide range of civil society organisations, including anti-Israel stalwarts such as COSATU; the Coalition for a Free Palestine (CFP); Kairos SA; the Media Review Network (MRN); and BDS-SA.

“Anti-Israel sentiment was horrendous”

Dudley - Cheryllyn“The anti-Israel sentiment expressed was horrendous,” says Cheryllyn Dudley, RIGHT, who had considered boycotting the conference. “The Committee decision to facilitate the conference was based on the understanding that in line with our International Relations policy, solidarity with these countries is a given - and that discussion needed to take place as to how best to express that solidarity.” But, she says, the African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) has never agreed to any policy position other than bringing people together to find workable solutions for all stakeholders and a real and lasting peace in the Middle East.

The session was opened by Portfolio Committee chair Tisetso Magama MP of the ANC,  followed by deputy minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Marius Fransman , Struggle icon Ahmed Kathrada and the Ambassadors of Cuba, Palestine and Western Sahara and Algeria.

Fransman told the gathering that: SA’s policy towards Palestine is based on international solidarity with the Palestinian cause, informed by the establishment of a viable Palestinian state, existing side by side in peace with Israel within borders based on those existing on 4 June 1967, prior to the outbreak of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, and with East Jerusalem as its capital.

“Government has shown some restraint in terms of cutting trade ties with Israel – the way I see it is that government is between a rock and a hard place as anti-Israel pressure mounts on the one hand and trade and other ties with Israel are clearly beneficial to South Africa on the other,” Dudley said, adding that “bi-lateral trade in 2012 was worth $1-bil and (anti-Israeli) lobby groups are not prepared to let it go. There is huge pressure from lobby groups for Government to put their statements of solidarity into action.

Dudley told the SAJR-Online that she had asked the committee chair Magama if there was anybody invited to represent the official Israeli position or that of pro-Israel Christian and Jewish communities in South Africa especially business men and women. “Hon Magama confirmed that he saw no need to invite anybody who was not going to speak from a position of ‘solidarity’ with Palestine, Cuba and W. Sahara,” she was told. 

Kluk & Krengel respond

In a joint STATEMENT issued to the SA Jewish community by the SAZF and SAJBD chairs this afternoon, the leadership said that the conference: "regrettably proved to be little more than a stage managed show trial, one in which Israel was as usual tried, condemned and sentenced in absentia.

"It was disappointing to note that of all the opposition parties present, only the African Christian Democratic Party spoke out against this flagrant hijacking of the Parliamentary process by special interest groups. We commend the ACDP for taking the principled stand that they did," read the statement.

"Neither the Israeli Embassy nor the Jewish communal leadership were invited to provide an Israeli perspective."

The Cape Town Declaration

Dudley says Magama pointed out, however, that those individuals or organisations that asked to be there were welcomed on the understanding that this was a conference to discuss “how to express solidarity” and not “whether or not the policy of solidarity was acceptable.”

In other words, Jews who were not involved in Israel Advocacy were allowed to attend.

The SAJR understands that there is no ‘official’ version of the “Cape Town Declaration” as it still required approval of the Portfolio Committee. The following is an (abbreviated) version that has been posted by pro-Palestinian websites. Dudley believes it fairly represents what was read and agreed to by all at the conference except the ACDP:

1. SA has a legal obligation under the Rome Statute to set up a special court to deal with war crimes, this needs to be urgently setup. SA must expeditiously deal with the “Gaza Docket” and deal with S-Africans serving in the Israeli Defence Force;

2. The 2009 HSRC report that found Israel guilty of Apartheid should be adopted by SA’s Parliament and by the SA gov’t. The HSRC report must also be referred to international bodies including the ICC, the UN and the AU.

3. SA has a legal obligation and must stop all financial transactions with Israeli settlement companies as well as banks and companies involved in the Israeli settlements.

4. On the global arena SA must lobby for the financial and other support of the Palestinians for socioeconomic development after the end of the illegal Israeli occupation.

5. The SA gov’t must support Palestinian students, as a concrete act of solidarity.

6. Entrance into SA for Palestinians must be made easier.

7. The Palestinian health system must be supported beyond people capacity. Infrastructure in Gaza, West Bank and refugee camps must be supported.

8. Conference supports the Robben Island Declaration for the freedom of Marwan Barghouti and all Palestinian Political prisoners.

9. Conference supports the Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) issued by the majority of Palestinians. Complete military, financial and political sanctions must be applied against Israel until it complies with all applicable UN resolutions and international law and ends its occupation.

10. All SA political parties must clearly communicate their stance on the plight of the Palestinian people and make it timeously known in the build-up to 2014 elections.

11. Witness and solidarity visits to Palestine should be encouraged.

12. SA should build and strengthen a diplomatic block in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

13. The SA gov’t and parliament must campaign for Israel to be suspended from the SWIFT banking network.

14. Palestinian reconciliation efforts must be encouraged and supported.

15. Our government and parliament must table the above at the AU, UN and IPU.

 

The recommendations have been forwarded to the Portfolio Committee for discussion and as Magama explained to participants at the Solidarity Conference. Only the ACDP distanced themselves from the declaration. “The ACDP’s input on the declaration will be seriously considered along with all others,” said Hon Dudley, who was informed today that the committee will meet next week to discuss the declaration in, this order to agree recommendations to be tabled in Parliament.

The committee usually meets on a Wednesday mornings.

 

Related reading:

Fransman tells Jews to stop nose-picking

9 Comments

  1. 9 Anonymous 13 Feb
    The DA has now proven itself to be more concerned with growing the Moslem vote than aligning itself with the morality of support for the Jewish state. The Jewish community should be strongly encouraged to vote for the ACDP - the lone party in parliament that are proven loyal supporters of Israel.  We are under attack as a community and the SA Government is making no bones about its antagonism towards the Jewish State. I think that it is time for our Jewish Community organisations to stop pussyfooting around and show more backbone. It is time for our Jewish Community organisations to strongly intervene and show more character - apparently are too scared to rock the boat - this is not the was that Jews under threat have been taught by history to behave. 
  2. 8 Anon 13 Feb
    The ANC display their true colours. A call for ALL & any charity by Jews, provided to ALL or any organisations that benefit non Jews, must cease immediately. The only manner in which to hurt, is via the pocket! Let those organisations know the reasons for cessation of funding. It's high time that SA Jewry quit being politically correct!! As for allowing more freedom to allow Palestinians into SA.....well, that's just the perfect formula for disaster!
  3. 7 Charedim 13 Feb
    This is calling down a 'woe' on South Africa.  Those who curse Israel will be cursed, those who bless Israel will be blessed.

    May G-d have mercy.

    It seems there is an invitiation - then there is a push:

    Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that it shall no more be said: ‘As the Lord liveth, that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’ but: ‘As the Lord liveth, that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the countries whither He had driven them’; and I will bring them back into their land that I gave unto their fathers. Behold, I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish them; and afterward I will send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the clefts of the rocks.
  4. 6 Gregory Nurok 14 Feb
    You have definitely convinced me to vote for the ACDP,and i will spread the word
  5. 5 Gerda Timmermans 15 Feb
    That's democracy ANC style - after 20 years it doesn't surprise me!
  6. 4 Mike Cohen 17 Feb
    This parliamentary circus should never have been let to happen aa a free-for-all-bash Israel act. I find it hard to accept that according to the reports, some "Jews" were present, but no official strong presence. Apparently, A "Zionist" spoke very briefly before being silenced. 
    Looks like someone fell alseep on guard duty. 
    Disappointed!
  7. 3 Saun Stoffberg 20 Feb

    I am shocked when reading this article. i am Afrikaans speaking christian and always supportin Israel coz the Word tells us to do so. i strongly belief that "those who curse Israel will be cursed and those who Bless them will be Blessed '" . In the passed i alwayed supported DA because of their stance but from now on i will rather support a Pary who is Pro Israel like ACDP. and will spread the word regarding this matter   i think all geniune Christians should do so.

  8. 2 Shaheen 22 Apr
    The Jews in palestine are evil, a people should be judged by their actions, and if so the jews will be the most heartless people on earth today.

  9. 1 Lettie 11 Sep
    To me it is wonderful to know that their are people standing with Israel - those who curse Israel will be cursed - do the people not realise what this means, i personaly don't want to live in a cursed land.  Thank you ACDP for standing with Israel you are a blessed people. I voted for you last time and I shall do so again. Lets rather bring a blessing on our country by standing with Israel.

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