Looking for a measure of Palestinian unity - in SA

  • Palestinian
The Israeli Embassy in South Africa would not comment on a week-long dialogue which is being held in the Western Cape by Palestinians from different political parties and persuasions to discuss their differences and how to achieve a common political vision following failed negotiations with Israel.
by STAFF REPORTER | Jul 27, 2016

The embassy said this was a matter between Palestinians and the embassy would therefore not be commenting.

Independent Foreign Service reports that this is the second such dialogue to be organised this year in South Africa by the In Transition Initiative (ITI), a South African conflict resolution non-governmental organisation which is led by former National Party Cabinet Minister Roelf Meyer, Ebrahim Ebrahim, Ivor Jenkins and Mahomed Bhabha, in partnership with the Institute for Palestine in South Africa.

It reports that Dr Nabeel Shaath, one of the senior Palestinian figures in Fatah (arch-foe of Hamas), is in the country this week. He has served as foreign minister, and has held other ministerial portfolios,      and has been a chief negotiator for the Palestinians with the Israelis.

Shaath was in Pretoria on Monday to meet Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, and is due to meet ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe.

Shaath said the outcome of the dialogue may not be immediate, but he believes that it will go a long way towards assisting Palestinian parties and factions to reassess their strategy after years of struggle and failed negotiations with the Israelis.

Among the participants are senior leaders from Fatah, Hamas, the Palestine National Initiative, Communist Party, Islamic Movement, Arab Party, Democratic Front, Popular Front, as well as select Palestinian civil society representatives.

The Palestinian Forum will be addressed by South African Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan, head of ANC International Relations Edna Molewa, former Constitutional Court Justice Albie Sachs, former ambassadors such as Mohammed Dangor and Ebrahim Rasool, and the South African special envoys to the Middle East.

This conference comes after a series of ongoing meetings between Fatah and Hamas which have been held in various Middle Eastern capitals such as Doha, Istanbul and Cairo, said the report.

The Palestinian dialogue held in South Africa is unique in that it does not exclusively focus on the contentious issues between Fatah and Hamas, but is based on an all-inclusive approach which brings together a plethora of Palestinian political groupings.

Shaath hopes that the first outcome of the dialogue this week will be to re-achieve a measure of Palestinian unity, which is critical at this juncture.

Palestinians are preparing to hold the first democratic elections in 10 years - when municipal elections are held on October 8. Hamas and Fatah, as the largest Palestinian parties, are both worried about being outvoted, but have agreed to accept the results.


  1. 4 Choni 27 Jul
    Palestine! Where on earth is that?
    Palestinian? Who are they?
  2. 3 nat cheiman 27 Jul
    With people like Ehrenreich and Fransman, can you imagine the garbage being discussed.
    More likely they discussed the Thulsie & Patel arrests.
    Ebrahim ( To infinity) also is a vacant person purporting to be sagacious in all political matters globally.
    When you compare the aptitude and quotient of the Israeli politicians to these blockheads, it is no wonder that Fatah & Hamas are at opposite poles. 
  3. 2 yitzchak 01 Aug
    Peace is easy,
    1) Accept the right of return of all Balestinian refugees.
    2) No more Jewish State of Israel.
    3)Kampala as the capital of the State of the Jews.
    4)All Zionists to go back to their countries of origin
    5)Al Quds to be the Capital of Balestina

    Hamas in RSA? Have they come to view a democratic election?

    Nabil Shaath???It's easier to find your soap in murky bathwater

    My best is Hamas b"fatah(humus b'pita) from the Carmel market.
  4. 1 Choni 02 Aug
    This is a nightmarish recollection of the Wannsee conference in Berlin in 1941. Then Al Husseini got together with the Nazis to plot the extermination of all Jews. Now, in South Africa,  Arab leaders are unifying to plot the destruction of the Jewish state of Israel.


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