South African Churches and Christians welcome ANC move to downgrade Tel Aviv Embassync4psouthafrica
South African Churches and Christians welcome ANC move to downgrade Tel Aviv Embassy
– Statement by Kairos Southern Africa
Kairos Southern Africa, a South African Christian theological organization, joins fellow churches and Christians of South Africa in welcoming the recommendation by branches of the ANC which was adopted by the National Policy Conference of the ANC to downgrade the South African Embassy in Tel Aviv.
We believe that this is the sort of bold action, not just words, which is required by the ANC and South African government. Action in the form of sanctions is what is being asked for by Palestinians including Palestinians Christians.
The South African Council of Churches recently returned from a trip to Palestine and the Holy Land where our South African Church leaders witnessed first hand Israel’s apartheid policies against the indigenous Palestinian people.
The Palestinian Christians under the banner of the National Coalition of Christian Organizations in Palestine (NCCOP) recently issued a called for support of BDS and other such measures which we believe this ANC resolution speaks to. Taking heed from the oppressed is essential in any situation!
The NCCOP, in a letter addressed to the World Council of Churches and other churches as well as the global community said:
“[We call on you to] call things as they are: recognize Israel as an apartheid state in terms of international law…we need your costly solidarity. We need brave women and men who are willing to stand in the forefront. This is no time for shallow diplomacy Christians…we ask that you speak in support of economic measures that pressure Israel to stop the occupation and that you support atheltic, cultural, and academic measures against Israel until it complies with international law and UN resolutions…this is our last peaceful resort…in response to Israel’s war on BDS, we ask that you intensify that measure.”
We look forward to the ANC decision being ratified at the national conference in December and thereafter being implemented by government to the celebration of peace and justice loving peoples of this country.
We hope that such measures will send a strong message to Israel that its violations of international law and human rights abuses are unacceptable. Just as in the case of Apartheid SA, such pressure will hopefully lead to the necessary conditions for a just peace to be negotiated in that part of the world.
Reverend Moss Ntlha
06 July 2017