PRESS STATEMENT: Israel denies SA Government Minister travel to Palestine
The Palestine solidarity and human rights organisation BDS South Africa joins the South African Government in expressing outrage that SA Government Minister for Higher Education Dr Blade Nzimande has been denied entry to Palestine by the Israeli Government (http://tinyurl.com/krxek6n).
Israel now more than ever needs to be isolated, its clear to us that in fact they are begging for an intensified campaign of boycotts, divestments and sanctions (BDS). This self-BDS act by Israel is not only an insult to the Minister and the Department of Higher Education but an insult to South Africans in general. Israel cannot want to tell us who our friends should be, where we should travel and who we can speak with. We concur with Dr Nzimande, also GS of the SACP, who has commented: “The Israeli Government is trying by all means to hide their atrocities against the Palestinian people, and minimize the number of people who can actually see what is happening on the ground.”
We support Dr Nzimande who plans to request that all South African universities and colleges that have academic relations with Israeli institutions sever their ties. We also support Dr Nzimande’s call for a general academic boycott of all Israeli academic institutions."(http://tinyurl.com/krxek6n) In 2011 the University of Johannesburg terminated its academic relationship with Israel's Ben Gurion University.
Dr Nzimande who together with the SACP has backed the BDS movement joins a growing list of high profile persons being denied entry to Palestine by the Israeli Government (watch video of Dr Blade Nzimande speaking at BDS SA event: www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvcxyYBydTI). In 2008 Archbishop Desmond Tutu was denied entry by Israel into Gaza as the head of a UN delegation investigating the death of a Palestinian family by Israel in 2006. In 2012 SA Government Minister Thulas Nxesi, who has been vocal in his support for the non-violent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel was denied entry. In 2008 United Nations Special Rapportuer for Human Rights and BDS supporter Professor Richard Falk was denied entry. Most recently in 2014, Marthie Momberg, a Woolworths shareholder who publicly backed the BDS #BoycottWoolworths campaign was denied entry.
BDS South Africa is more confident than ever that its time to expel the Israeli Ambassador from South Africa. A diplomatic expulsion will send a clear diplomatic message to the Apartheid State of Israel. Kushubile mange!!!!
ISSUED BY KWARA KEKANA ON BEHALF OF BDS SOUTH AFRICA
BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT AND SANCTIONS AGAINST ISRAEL IN SOUTH AFRICA (BDS SOUTH AFRICA)
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