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Statement by the Government of the Republic of South Africa on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People

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Statement by the Government of the Republic of South Africa on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People

The defense of the rights of the Palestinian people must be accompanied by material and practical support.

PRETORIA, South Africa, November 29, 2021 / APO Group / –

The Government of South Africa joins the international community in commemorating the United Nations’ 44th International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, as well as in renewing South Africa’s shared commitment to a just and lasting solution to the question of Palestine. The question of Palestine remains unresolved after 70 years and continues to defy human conscience and international justice.

Consistent with South Africa’s long-term and principled support for the Palestinian people, the Government of South Africa remains committed to supporting initiatives aimed at refocusing the international agenda on Palestine and the Middle East peace process. The question of Palestine continues to occupy a central place in the situation in the Middle East. The Government of South Africa believes that the only way to achieve lasting peace in the Middle East is to achieve a comprehensive and unconditional negotiated settlement to end the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories and the continued Israeli blockade of Gaza. The constant delay in achieving such an arrangement leads to an endless cycle of violence.

South Africa also remains highly critical of the continued defiance of the Government of Israel in refusing to stop the illegal expansion of settlements in the occupied Palestinian West Bank and East Jerusalem, complicating any possible resumption of substantial negotiations. Therefore, on this day, we once again call upon Israel to halt its policy of settlement expansion, including in East Jerusalem, and to realize that the only way to achieve peace is by creating an environment for a settlement of two States, where Israel can coexist in peace with a viable and totally independent Palestinian State within internationally recognized borders, based on those of June 4, 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

South Africa will further strengthen the longstanding bond of solidarity, friendship and cooperation with Palestine and calls upon the international community to work tirelessly for peace and provide strong humanitarian, economic and political support. The defense of the rights of the Palestinian people must be accompanied by material and practical support.

It is the duty of the international community to satisfy the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people. As former President Mandela once said, “We in South Africa can only truly be free once our Palestinian brothers achieve their freedom.”

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