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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist

‘Situation in Gaza likely to get worse’ – analyst

Israel’s 11-day bombing of Gaza has left thousands dead and more than one million displaced.

Thembisa Fakude, a senior research fellow at Africa Asia Dialogues says the situation in Gaza is likely to get worse if Israel continues its attack on the enclave.

Fakude’s comments come in the wake of Israel’s 11-day bombing of Gaza, which has left thousands dead and more than one million displaced. Israel was retaliating to an October 7 attack by Hamas.

Situation to worsen

Fakude told 702 the situation in Gaza was likely to get worse.

“You have this government of Israel that has been suffocating people in Gaza. This is not the first time that Gaza has been attacked. So, it’s going to get worse as long as you have Americans supporting the brutality that is happening and with Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu continuing doing what he is doing.

ALSO READ: Dirco sets record straight on alleged government support for Hamas in Gaza conflict

“But I think there are efforts at the moment with other Arab countries trying to speak sense to the Americans and hoping that the Americans will speak sense to the Israelis [to allow] the Gazans to vacate [from] Gaza to a better place – even though many of them are reluctant to leave.

“Many feel that if they leave, they might not  be able to go back to their homes. So that’s why they insist on staying where they are,” Fakude said.

On Tuesday, a blast ripped through a Gaza hospital killing hundreds of people, sparking global condemnation and violent protests in several Muslim nations.

Health authorities in Gaza said the explosion at the Ahli Arab Hospital killed between 200 and 300 people and was caused by Israeli airstrikes. Hamas said, in a statement, 500 had died.

SA’s stance

He said the South Africa’s stance on Palestine was not surprising because there are a lot of similarities between what happened in the country during apartheid and what is happening in Palestine today.

Speaking before the NEC meeting in Boksburg last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the ANC had always pushed for a two-party solution.

READ MORE: ‘Those who say we are imagining apartheid in Palestine, didn’t experience it’ – Pandor

“As a people and organisation that has struggled against an oppressive system of apartheid, we pledge solidarity with the Palestinians, and as the ANC always pledged our solidarity with them.”

Fakude said Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) had clarified its position on the conflict.

“I think the discussion that Minister Pandor had was mainly for humanitarian reasons and it had nothing to do with politics and we need to remember that Gaza is governed by Hamas since 2007. So, if you want to deal with any authority in Gaza in terms of assistance, you will have no other alternative but to speak to Hamas. I don’t think it had to do with any political support of Hamas.”

Gaza siege   

Fakude said the situation in Gaza has been most dire since 2007, describing the area as an “open-air prison”.

“Nothing comes in and nothing goes out. It’s a big open-air prison, no opportunities for young people, no economic activity. So that stress and strife has created the situation we are currently witnessing.

“It’s a very dire situation and what I think the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) was trying to do was mainly to encourage aid and humanitarian relief and all other interventions that seek to help the people of Gaza, which is what many of the other countries are currently doing,” Fakude said.

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Gaza Israel Naledi Pandor Palestine

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