Avatar photo

By Enkosi Selane

Digital Journalist

SA a ‘knight in shining armour’ for Palestinians – Ramaphosa [VIDEO]

In stark contrast to Ramaphosa's response to the ICJ ruling on Gaza, the SA Jewish Board of Deputies claims the decision is biased.

President Cyril Ramaphosa lauded the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) decision on Friday, 24 May which instructed Israel to immediately cease its military operations in Rafah, Gaza, and reopen the crucial Rafah crossing.

This ruling comes in response to South Africa’s urgent request for additional provisional measures in its ongoing case against Israel, alleging genocide in Gaza.

On Saturday, Israel however continued its strikes on Rafah despite the world court’s ruling.

Ramaphosa says Palestinians see SA as its saviour

While on the campaign trail in Soweto on Friday, Ramaphosa said Palestinians consider South Africans as their saviours for standing up for them and speaking out against the injustices and genocide they have come to face in Gaza.

“The people of Palestine see us as a knight in shining armour defending their rights and advocating justice for them, and we do this because a lack of justice for the people of Palestine is also a lack of justice for us,” Ramaphosa said.

He emphasised that South Africa’s freedom is inextricably linked to the freedom of the Palestinian people, echoing the words of former president Nelson Mandela, who said, “We will not be completely free until the people of Palestine are free”.

Renewed call for cease fire

International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) Minister Naledi Pandor also hailed the ICJ ruling, saying it was a clear and resounding demand for an immediate end to hostilities, emphasizing the need for urgent action to cease the violence while also providing humanitarian aid to those oppressed.

Pandor expressed concern that Israel may disregard the order, underscoring the need for UN member states and the Security Council to enforce international law.

ALSO READ: Hamas hails ICJ order for Israel to halt Rafah assault

They must now determine measures to protect the people of Palestine.

“Israel has enjoyed impunity for far too long, and it’s time for the global community to take collective action,” Pandor added.

Watch: Naledi Pandor speaking to the SABC on ICJ’s ruling

Jewish board unhappy about ICJ’s ruling

In stark contrast to Ramaphosa’s response to the ICJ’s ruling, the, the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) thought the decision was biased.

The board denounced the ICJ ruling, arguing that the court lacks jurisdiction over Hamas. While the ICJ’s verdict is obligatory, the court can only do so much to implement its decisions.

The board also called out South Africa for neglecting to condemn Hamas’ atrocities against Israel, including the capture of hostages and sexual threats against Israeli women.

ALSO READ: China warns of Taiwan ‘war’ as military drills encircle island

National director Wendy Kahn told Jacaranda FM that “South Africa has irrevocably tarnished its reputation as an honest broker by willfully overlooking the heinous crimes of Hamas”.

Humanitarian crisis devastates Gaza

The conflict in Gaza has led to a humanitarian crisis, resulting in a significant loss of life.

The crisis began last year on 7 October, following a surprise attack by Hamas militants on Israel, which resulted in the deaths of over 1,170 people, mostly civilians.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, over 35,800 people have been killed, with a large demographic of women and children.

For more news your way

Download our app and read this and other great stories on the move. Available for Android and iOS.

For more news your way

Download our app and read this and other great stories on the move. Available for Android and iOS.